ANZ Bank New Zealand Chief Executive David Hisco believes that India is a strategic market that will continue to offer increasing opportunities for growth of trade and commerce.
The Bank had put in place a series of initiatives and programmes to foster better engagement with India, including sponsoring business delegations to visit major centres in that country, he said.
He cited the visit of a group of food and beverage personnel to India in April this year as an example, saying, “The eight-day trip, organised by ANZ, enabled the members of the delegation to learn more about the opportunities available in India. This was a part of our on-going commitment to supporting trade with India.”
Mr Hisco was speaking at the Diwali Lunch that his Bank hosted at Pullman Hotel in Auckland on October 18, 2013.
The event, sixth in an annual series, was attended by more than 500 guests.
Among them were Tertiary Education, Skills & Employment Minister Steven Joyce, Indian High Commission First Secretary Mukesh Randev, Members of Parliament Dr Rajen Prasad (Labour), Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi, Jonathan Young (National), Former Black Caps Captain and Chennai Super King Coach Stephen Fleming, New Zealand Cricket Board Member Geoff Allott, entrepreneurs and community leaders.
Mr Hisco said that ANZ was proud of its strong relationship with the Indian community.
“That relationship is growing stronger. This year alone we have helped more than 3000 Indian customers into a banking relationship with ANZ. We are proud of our Indian staff from different parts of the world, who speak Hindi and various Indian languages. About 15% of our Auckland Business Banking team is Indian,” he said.
He said that ANZ had developed a number of specialist products including the Migrant Banking Package to facilitate easy transition into New Zealand.
“We are happy that our customers in New Zealand are using our local expertise and banking relationships back in India, particularly with our Mumbai branch, which has been successfully functioning since it opened two years ago,” he said.
He said that earlier this year, the Bank launched its second Insight Paper called, “Thinking India? Think Long Term,” which highlighted opportunities in product exports, education and tourism.
He said that the Bank facilitated Memoranda of Understanding between leading New Zealand and Indian universities and institutes over the past two years.
The MoU signed by Lincoln University and the Indian Institute of Management was part of the Bank’s efforts, he said.
Mr Joyce said that his Government was working to optimise the existing and emerging opportunities in India and that ministries, government departments and agencies were actively pursuing a number of programmes.
“We share a number of common interests with India. Our efforts to market New Zealand as the ideal educational, commercial and tourist destinations have been accruing impressive results. India is our 15th largest trading partner with the total value of our annual exports estimated at more than $725 million. Tourism is also a major beneficiary of our closer relationship, with more than 30,000 Indians visiting our country every year,” he said.
According to Mr Joyce, student numbers from India have also been growing,
Among the other speakers were Messers Randev, Fleming and Allott.
Mr Hisco said that ANZ is the largest Australasian employer in India with a complement of more than 5500 staff at its Bangalore office, which supports the Bank’s global operations.
“ANZ is also a proud sponsor of the New Zealand Indian Research Institute Conference. We have established a unique funds transfer scheme for students from India. We are proud to sponsor the Blackcaps’ International Series vs India early next year,” Mr Hisco said.
The Picture here shows ANZ Head of India Relations and Master of Ceremonies Sunny Kaushal, Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi, Mukesh Randev, Steven Joyce, David Hisco and Dr Rajen Prasad at the ANZ Diwali lunch on October 18.