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India-Netherlands Entrepreneurs Forum 2024: Fostering Collaboration and Innovation

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Diplomat Magazine
Diplomat Magazine
DIPLOMAT MAGAZINE “For diplomats, by diplomats” Reaching out the world from the European Union First diplomatic publication based in The Netherlands. Founded by members of the diplomatic corps on June 19th, 2013. "Diplomat Magazine is inspiring diplomats, civil servants and academics to contribute to a free flow of ideas through an extremely rich diplomatic life, full of exclusive events and cultural exchanges, as well as by exposing profound ideas and political debates in our printed and online editions." Dr. Mayelinne De Lara, Publisher

On the morning of February 27, 2024, the Marriott Hotel in The Hague buzzed with anticipation as entrepreneurs of Indian origin and non-resident Indians (PIO/NRI) gathered for the inaugural India-Netherlands Entrepreneurs Forum. Organized by the Embassy of India in The Hague, this event marked a significant stride in bolstering ties between the Indian diaspora and the Netherlands, fostering collaboration, sharing experiences, and promoting cultural affinity.

Networking Session at the India-Netherlands Entrepreneurs Forum 2024.

The forum, a brainchild of the Embassy of India, received robust support from the Diaspora Engagement Division of the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India, along with various India-Netherlands business agencies, associations, and organizations.

Aimed at providing a platform for PIO/NRI entrepreneurs, it aimed to facilitate networking, share insights, and explore opportunities in the Dutch entrepreneurial ecosystem.

The Embassy team responsible for organizing the event India-Netherlands Entrepreneurs Forum 2024

With approximately 150 attendees, comprising established entrepreneurs and aspiring individuals eager to delve into the entrepreneurial landscape, the event promised a wealth of knowledge exchange and networking prospects. Participants came prepared to share their experiences, learn from industry stalwarts, and forge meaningful connections.

The forum commenced with the voice of Indian classical vocalist Sushmita Guha Thakurta, who regaled the audience with a Bollywood mashup. Amidst the soulful melodies, attendees eagerly awaited insights from distinguished speakers and stakeholders.

Experience sharing by established entrepreneurs during the Panel Discussion.

The Ambassador of India to the Netherlands, H.E. Mrs. Reenat Sandhu, inaugurated the event, underlining the forum’s significance in advancing bilateral economic relations. She underscored India’s economic trajectory, emphasizing the pivotal role of the Indian diaspora in fostering India’s development. The Ambassador highlighted avenues for collaboration, including priority sectors such as water, agriculture, health, and burgeoning domains like AI and green hydrogen.

Keynote speaker Ms. Wampie Libon, Director of the International Enterprise Department at the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, elucidated the vast opportunities available for Indian entrepreneurs in the Netherlands. Emphasizing the supportive business ecosystem and the scope for public-private partnerships, Libon encouraged entrepreneurs, particularly women, to leverage the conducive environment for innovation and growth.

Select PIO/NRI businesses showcasing /displaying their products/services in the exhibition area during the event.

Mr. Martijn Croon from the Netherlands Enterprise Agency delved into the practical aspects of starting a business in the Netherlands, shedding light on governmental support, innovation initiatives, and visa schemes tailored for startups and scale-ups. His insights provided attendees with tangible strategies to navigate the Dutch entrepreneurial landscape effectively.

A highlight of the forum was the panel discussion featuring eminent Indian entrepreneurs in the Netherlands, including Mr. Vipin Moharir, Mr. Manu Katyal, and Mr. Rohan Grover. Moderated by Ms. Prachee van Brandenburg, the panelists shared invaluable insights gleaned from their entrepreneurial journeys, stressing the importance of networking and cultural integration for business success.

Question & Answer Session at the event.

The event also showcased the role of organizations like the Netherlands India Chamber of Commerce & Trade and the Indian Business Chamber in promoting commercial interests and facilitating networking opportunities for Indian businesses in the Netherlands.

With a special focus on empowering women entrepreneurs, the forum witnessed active participation from women speakers and budding entrepreneurs, fostering discussions on personal fulfillment, professional success, and the importance of skill development.

Moreover, select PIO/NRI businesses had the opportunity to showcase their products and services, further amplifying networking prospects and fostering collaboration.

Some women entrepreneurs with the Ambassador at the event India-Netherlands Entrepreneurs Forum 2024

As the day drew to a close, attendees departed with a sense of fulfillment, having engaged in fruitful discussions, forged new connections, and gained valuable insights into the entrepreneurial landscape of the Netherlands.

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