Future of business is Asia, says Indian president

Manila, February 6:

Declaring that the “future of business is definitely Asia”, Indian president A P J Abdul Kalam today urged greater interaction between India and Southeast Asia to mutually leverage their strengths.

“The future of business is definitely Asia. Increasingly, Western countries and other business groups are focusing toward Asian countries,” the president said while addressing the Philippines Congress, the last engagement of his four-day long official visit here. Noting that Western markets were getting ‘saturated’, he said the Asian region provides a ‘huge opportunity’ for businesses to expand their market share. Urging the Association of South-East Asian Nations to develop a “robust e-business framework”, he said that India “with its core competence in ICT, space and human capital” could partner with the network.

Kalam’s remarks are significant because the Philippines is to host later this year the annual ASEAN summit that Indian prime minister is expected to attend. Detailing the India-Philippines economic cooperation road map, Kalam said trade between the two countries was expected to rise from the current $577 million to $2 billion in next three years.