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India is hot potato for Finnish firms

Finnish SMEs plan to invest huge sum in India in areas such as technology, healthcare and tourism.

business Updated:

Finnish small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are planning to invest 200 million euros in India by the end of this year in areas such as technology, healthcare, wellness and tourism.

"Currently investments by Finnish companies are to the tune of 50 million euros and we intend to take it up to 200 million euros by 2007", said Seppo I Keranen, head, Finpro India, a Finnish trade and industry body.

"There are many small and medium Finnish companies that want to do business in India and same with Indian companies, but they are not being able to communicate with each other properly, so Finpro acts as a facilitator," Keranen added.

Some of the big Finnish companies that have operations in India are Nokia, Kone, Sandvik and Wartsila.

"Big companies can come and do business on their own but we are facilitating business opportunities for the smaller companies."

Finpro will hold the first Indo Finnish Business Meet - FIND 2007 - in Goa from April 24 to 26 to connect Finnish and Indian companies in an informal environment.

"We will help them find new clients, new business partners. This will be something like a matchmaking process," he stated.

"We want to also promote Finland as the most preferred tourist destination in India," he said.

"Currently the size of Indian tourist arrivals in Finland is very small. In the year 2005, less than 4,000 visas were issued for Indians travelling to Finland, in 2006 more than 8,000 visas were issued and our target is to take it up to 20,000 visas this year," Keranen said.

According to Keranen, Finpro is also bullish on India's movie industry and he wants Indian movie directors to shoot films in scenic locales of Finland.

"India is like a hot potato, India is now hungry and we want to take advantage of this opportunity."