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Eighth Auto Expo kicks off today

The Expo is expected to see business deals cross the $100 mn barrier this time, writes Deshbandhu Singh.

india Updated: Jan 17, 2006 17:45 IST

The eighth edition of the Auto Expo will begin on Thursday promising six days of automobile extravaganza with new launches and big announcements by domestic and foreign automobile giants.

Commerce and Industry Minister Kamal Nath and Heavy Industries Minister Santosh Mohan Deb will inaugurate the event, jointly organised by the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), Auto Component Manufacturers Association and industry chamber CII.

The Expo has bagged participation from more than 1000 players, including 300 overseas companies from 22 countries. Countries such as UK, China, Germany, Italy and Taiwan are participating through country pavilion.

For the first time several organisations from Britain have joined hands to bring a UK delegation comprising 79 members, representing about 50 UK companies. Announcing this Stephen Lillie, Director of Trade & Industry, British High Commission, said: "India is becoming an increasingly important player in the world automotive sector. AutoExpo, the largest show of its kind in Asia, is just one reflection of this."

In the last 3 years, there have been 36 partnerships between Indian and UK automotive companies.

The Expo, which provides a major opportunity for Indian automobile and component industry to showcase their prowess, is expected to see business deals nearly double to cross the 100 million dollar (Rs 440 crore approximately) barrier this time.

"The response is enormous and we expect that business deals, valued around 55 million dollars in the 2004 edition, will cross 100 million dollars (this year)," a senior official of CII said.

First Published: Jan 12, 2006 01:52 IST