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Czech Republic eyes investment in defence, other sectors in India

Czech Republic eyes investment in defence, other sectors in India

MUMBAI: Czech Republic companies are looking forward to invest in sectors like automobile, energy, infrastructure and defence in India, a top official from that country said today.

“We are looking at investment in sectors like automobile, energy and infrastructure and defence in India. Czech companies like Skoda Auto, Skoda Power, Bonatrans Group and Eldis are some of the companies that have plans to invest heavily in India,” Czech Republic Ambassador to India Milan Hovorka told after opening its first Visa Application Centre (VAC) in India, in Mumbai with VFS Global.

A number of Czech companies are already engaged in automobile, energy, infrastructure and large industrial projects in India and are creating jobs here, he said.

Hovorka said the bilateral trade between the Czech Republic and India stood at $ 1.5 billion and that he would be more than keen to take bilateral relations to the next level.

“India is an important country and Mumbai is an important part of this nation. We are interested in strengthening ties with other parts of India as well, and definitely we would like to promote people-to-people contact. The Czech Republic also sees rising trend in Indians visiting the Central European country,” he said.

With regard to the number of applications that the Czech Republic Embassy receives, Hovorka said, “We are happy to see the number of visa applications. In 2014, we got 9,000 applications, 20 per cent higher from 2013. For the first half of 2015, we got 7,500 applications. This is a tremendous increase in the number of Indians coming to visit our country.”

Hovorka said tourism can be developed only when there is a direct flight between India and Czech Republic. “At the moment, there is no direct flight, but I hope that we will soon have direct flight between important Indian cities connected directly with Czech Republic cities,” the diplomat said.

On the focus segments for tourism development, Hovorka mentioned wellness (spas), golf, group tours, destination weddings, and Bollywood.

The Czech Republic government is providing incentives to Bollywood industry to shoot films in the country.

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