For every Indian who has an entrepreneurial success in the U.S., there are 10 to 15 back home in India who want to emulate him, Rinzing Wangdi, consul general of India for the Southeast, said at an Atlanta Roundtable(r) held at the World Trade Center downtown last week.
Mr. Wangdi stressed the ties binding India and the U.S. economically as well as culturally and displayed a genuine interest in helping stimulate entrepreneurial projects in the Southeast involving India. In the same discussion, however, he expressed his concerns over the current state of India-U.S. affairs.
U.S. policy seems to be increasingly tilted toward China and Pakistan at the expense of his country, he said, particularly since India’s nuclear tests in May. In addition, he said that he felt the removal of sanctions against Pakistan, which also held nuclear tests, was proceeding more rapidly than their removal against India, and he was highly critical of China’s policy of allowing prison labor to produce goods for export.
Meanwhile, U.S. businesses were losing ground in India, he said, to competitors, primarily from Europe, who are actively competing for a wide array of hydroelectric, highway, port and airport development projects, which he called India’s quiet revolution.
The primary purpose of last week’s visit was to donate Indian musical instruments to the Georgia Music Hall of Fame. Aside from the Atlanta Roundtable discussion, he spoke at a dinner meeting of the Indian Professionals Network and visited with officials from Emory University and the Georgia Tech Center for International Business and Education.
Mr. Wangdi encouraged the further development of exchange programs between Indian and U.S. universities, citing the mutual development they have provided in a variety of fields.
He also discussed potential collaborations between Indian and U.S. business firms to develop the economies of Africa. As high commissioner from India to Zambia from 1991-95, he said he aided several entrepreneurial projects there including the purchase by an Indian company of an unproductive 5,000-acre tea garden, which now exports 2,000 tons of tea a year.
He cited metal finishing equipment for India’s jewelry sector, leatherworking and its movie industry as providing business opportunities for local businesspeople and investors.
For more information, Mr. Wangdi may be reached by calling (713) 626-2148; fax, (713) 626-2450 or send an E-mail to >firstname.lastname@example.org<