The second Korea-India Business Summit jointly hosted by the Chosun Ilbo, the Korea Trade Investment Promotion Agency and Confederation of Indian Industry was held in New Delhi on Tuesday.
Some 1,200 businesspeople, politicians and bureaucrats from both countries converged to discuss possible investments and more economic cooperation. From Korea came around 350 executives from 84 companies, while the Indian side was represented by some 800 executives from 400 companies, including Mahindra Group chairman Anand Mahindra.
In a keynote speech, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged Korean businesses to come to India. "India is one of the most open economies in the world and is ready to do business with the world," he claimed.
Modi stressed three major strengths of the Indian market: a democratic government, young population with an average age of 29, and huge market. "If you see around the globe, there are very few countries where you have three important factors of economy together. They are 'democracy, demography and demand.' In India, we have all the three together," he said.
India ranks second in the world in terms of the number of mobile phone users and fourth in car sales.
"We are also a country with the one of the largest start-up eco-system," he added. "Very soon, we will become the world’s fifth-largest economy by nominal GDP. We are also the fastest-growing major economy of the world today."
Prior to the opening, Modi met for 40 minutes with 30 Korean executives and asked them to tell his government of specific incentives they wish for and pledged to offer assistance.
He also took a ride in Hyundai's NEXO fuel cell electric car.
Around 80 small and mid-sized Korean companies involved in renewable energy, shipbuilding, IT, automobiles and food processing met with Indian business and government representatives at the forum.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi makes a keynote speech at the Korea-India Business Summit in New Delhi on Tuesday.