More picture galleries
(JB) The Indian festival of lights got off to an energetic start in Luxembourg on Saturday when the Indian Business Club (IBCL) welcomed 400 people to its annual Diwali party.
The Bollywood gala hosted at Casino 2000 in Mondorf-les-Bains welcomed Employment Minister Nicolas Schmit as guest of honour and featured a lively and colourful show of traditional dance, music and dress from Desi Events and Dansez l'Inde.
Diwali is associated with Lakschmi, the goddess of prosperity and serves to mark the beginning of the fiscal year in India.
It's a day where we invite the business community to discover India and its traditions
“This is one of the big events in the IBCL calendar,” Chamber President Pedro Castilho told Wort.lu/en, adding: “It's a day where we invite the business community to discover India and its traditions, to taste some Indian food and to have fun. The target is not to make business but for people to get to know one another.”
Serving as president since
January this year after succeeding chamber founder Sudhir Kohli, Mr
Castilho explained the Diwali festival had been scaled down from the
usual 550 guests in order to make a few tweaks to the way it is run.
As a result, the meal was served during the entertainment at tables as opposed to having a buffet, to better accommodate the needs of the guests, many of which attended with young children.
An IBCL chapter in Mumbai
In his speech, Mr Castilho
outlined a few changes to the way the chamber will operate in future, notably
his plan to create an IBCL in Mumbai.
We will be the first bilateral chamber in Luxembourg to set up a chapter in a partner country
“We will be the first bilateral chamber in Luxembourg to set up a chapter in a partner country,” he said, explaining that it will take a lot of time and investment to convince Indians that Luxembourg can be an effective gateway to Europe.
“Luxembourg is completely unknown (in India). It's as simple as that. So we have to start somewhere,” he said.
The structure would be
staffed by two people employed by IBCL to work on developing new
business between Luxembourg and India.
Feasibility studies are still
ongoing but the president expected the office would open during the
second quarter of 2017, if all went to plan.
Indian Summit in Luxembourg
Another novelty in 2017
will be the introduction of an Indian Summit in Luxembourg to
coincide with the Greater Region Business Days in June.
The president is drawing up a two-day programme where people interested in doing business with India can find out more.
A business delegation from Luxembourg visited India in March 2016. Mr Castilho said the mission was successful in putting Luxembourg “on the radar”.
The next IBCL event will be about banking in BRICK countries, hosted on November 17, 2016.
To find out more, visit www.ibcl.lu