22 Ağustos 2011 Pazartesi

Weddings a venue for new trade ties

Glorious wedding ceremonies of Indian businessmen in Istanbul have paved the way for excessive business deals between Turkey and India, an official says
Istanbul and Antalya have recently hosted two major Indian weddings, which cost a total of 5 million euros, Gupta says. HÜRRİYET photo

Matrimonial ceremonies worth millions of dollars that are arranged for Indian tycoons in Turkey host much more than colorful dresses and luxurious tastes: They pave the way for extensive business deals in international trade.

Turkey’s trade with India has jumped 88 percent in the first half of this year, Subhash Gupta, the Indian Consul for Economic & Trade Affairs in Istanbul, told the Hürriyet Daily News in an interview on Thursday. The bilateral trade volume rose to $3.44 billion in the first half of this year, compared to $1.83 billion in the same period last year.

According to the official, Indian weddings in Istanbul played a significant role in the increase of trade volumes.
For Indian businessmen and their families visiting Istanbul, weddings not only mean fun, but also networking, Gupta said. “Recently, Indian weddings taking place in Turkey are paving the way to more deals and more trade and investment between the two countries.”

Istanbul and the southern province of Antalya recently hosted two major Indian weddings, which cost nearly 5 million euros in total. Vartika Mittal, the nephew of the Indian steel magnate and owner of Arcelor Mittal, the world’s largest steelmaking company, married Utsav Goenka in Istanbul. Some 500 guests attended the three-day ceremony, which cost 3 million euros.

Last month, the Indian families of Bansal and Kanodia also spent 2 million euros on their children’s wedding at the Mardan Palace Hotel in Turkey’s southern province of Antalya. For 450 guests, they reserved 250 rooms in the hotel.

The major items of India’s exports to Turkey include cotton yarn, synthetic yarn, organic dyes, organic chemicals, denim, steel bars and rods, granite, antibiotics, carpets, unwrought zinc, clothing and apparel. Turkish exports to India include poppy seeds, auto components, marble, textile machinery, handlooms, denim, carpets, cumin seeds, minerals and steel products.

Indian investment in Turkey has also accelerated in recent months. Indian Ruia Group acquired Turkish automotive sealing manufacturing firm Standart Profil at an undisclosed price in May. The group also plans to enter the Turkish mining, energy and metals sectors through acquisitions. Vandanaa, an Indian energy group, also recently acquired Ser Mining, a Turkish mining firm. India’s Oil and Natural Gas Corp., or ONGC, is considering investing in oil exploration in Turkey.

Negotiations between India and Turkey to establish a free trade agreement are ongoing, said Gupta, adding that significant steps have been taken toward an agreement. “It will be the benefit of both sides,” he said.

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