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Press Release

Governor O'Malley Delivers Keynote Speech at Maryland-India Business Roundtable Gala and Awards Ceremony

GREENBELT, MD (November 20, 2008) – Governor Martin O’Malley today delivered the keynote address at the 4th Annual Maryland-India Business Roundtable Gala and Awards Ceremony, an event held at Martins Crosswinds in Greenbelt, Maryland. Governor O’Malley’s remarks focused on strengthening the ties between Maryland and India and developing new opportunities in the life sciences and information technology fields.

“For both India and Maryland, the life sciences present a panoply of vast opportunity, both in terms of our ability to compete in an increasingly knowledge-based global economy, and in our ability to offer some moral leadership in our world, to develop and proliferate these cures, these treatments, these technologies which can heal both our own neighbors here at home and our global neighbors across a world that’s growing ever more flat and interdependent by the day,” Governor O’Malley said.  “Because both Marylanders and Indians recognize that our greatness isn’t about how many smart bombs we can drop, we can continue to strengthen our ties with India and develop new opportunities to expand our partnerships in cutting edge fields like the life sciences and information technology.”

This past summer, Governor O’Malley hosted a lunch at Government House for the Governor of Orissa, India and discussed the similarities between Maryland and India, particularly their vision for the bioscience industry. 

“The biosciences, of course, are just one of several examples where Maryland and India both lead in the emerging knowledge-based economy – which is why it is no surprise that we are both placing a renewed emphasis on things like education, workforce creation and infrastructure development, the building blocks of our future economic growth,” Governor O’Malley said.

Governor O’Malley emphasized the importance of strengthening ties with countries beyond our national borders in order to compete in this global economy.

“As our world grows smaller, it’s becoming more and more imperative for those of us in State government to look beyond our national borders to help fuel our economic growth.  Foreign-owned companies doing business in our State help us to strengthen and grow the ranks of our upwardly-mobile middle class,” he said.  “There are more than 100,000 people working in Maryland for foreign-owned firms, and this is part of the reason that we are in better position than other states to climb out of this national economic downturn.”

During his remarks, Governor O’Malley outlinedMaryland’s strengths as a global competitor.  For example, from January through June of 2008, Maryland exports have grown 35 percent year-on-year – nearly double the nationwide rate of 18 percent. In addition, 3,700 businesses in Maryland contribute to Maryland’s export economy, 85 percent of which are small businesses.  Major investment successes have come in the form of the Sparrows Point purchase by Severstal (Russia), the purchase of biotech companies Co-Genesys (Israel) and Iomai (Austria), and the decision of two Israeli companies, ClassifEye and BioLineRx, to establish facilities in Maryland.  A number of Maryland counties have also undertaken their own economic development missions, including Baltimore City, Howard County, Anne Arundel County, Montgomery County, Prince George’s County, and Charles County who have organized delegations of business executives to China, India, Europe, and Korea.

Governor O’Malley concluded his remarks with his thoughts on how Maryland and India can continue to strengthen and build trade partnerships. 

Today, Maryland and India already are conducting a considerable amount of trade.  We export products like electronics, pharmaceuticals and aircraft and aviation products, and we import hundreds of millions of dollars from India as well,” said Governor O’Malley.  “The very good news is that our exports to India are growing.  In all of 2006, our exports to India totaled $103 million. By July of this year, we had already reached $113 million.  And in this same month, we welcomed five Indian technology companies, which established pilot offices at the Rockville Innovation Center – beating out New York, Virginia and New Jersey.”

“We believe that India presents Maryland with some of our greatest opportunities for developing new trade partnerships and attracting new direct investment across a variety of sectors: the biosciences, pharmaceuticals, health care management, information technology, engineering services, aerospace, defense, and so forth.”

With a population of over 1.2 billion and a 300 million-member middle class, India represents an enormous opportunity for Maryland both in terms of foreign direct investment and trade promotion. To attract India companies to Maryland, the state plans to focus on industry sectors in which both Maryland and India are strong: biotechnology, pharmaceuticals and health care management, information technology and engineering services, and aerospace and defense. Also, India’s recent decision to allow foreign direct investment with regards to their defense sector has created an ongoing modernization plan of its Armed Forces, and enormous new investment opportunities in the civil aviation sector. Maryland’s Department of Business and Economic Development plans to attend the AERO India Conference in February to help attract foreign direct investment and help Maryland businesses expand their business in India.

The Indian economy has posted an average annual growth rate of more than 7 percent since 1997, reducing nationwide poverty by about ten percentage points.  India’s real GDP growth for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2007 reached 9.4 percent, up from 9.0 percent in the previous year.  If these trends continue, India’s economy may surpass the U.S. and be second only to China’s by mid-century. 

Founded in 2004, the Maryland-India Business Round Table Inc. (MIBRT) is an autonomous, non-profit, public-private partnership established as a 501 (c) (6) Corporation. Its mission is to foster cooperation and promote trade and investment between businesses operating in India and Maryland.

Many noteworthy achievements have stemmed from the MIBRT, including the opening of the Maryland-India Business Center in Prince George’s County in May 2006, the launching of numerous trade missions to India, and the signing of numerous MOUs. Additionally, five Indian technology companies established a pilot office in the Rockville Innovation Center in July 2008. The companies — Jiva Internet Solutions, Alliance Infotech, PT Puretesting Software, Interra Information Technologies and Heuristics Informatics — are members of the Indian Electronics and Computer Software Export Promotion Council. DBED’s Division of International Trade and Investment worked with Montgomery County to attract companies to Maryland, which beat out New York, New Jersey and Virginia.


Up-Coming Events:

June 27-July 1, 2011: Bio International Convention at Washington, DC- Bio Delegation will visit Maryland
August 19th: CEO Executive Breakfast series. from 8:00 to 10:00 am. Place: MIBRT Board Room in Largo, Maryland.
September 23, 2011: "India Tech Summit".  Washington DC. From 10:00 am to 3:00 P.M.
October 24-25, 2011: Ag Bio Summit- Africa. Place: Egypt.
November 17, 2011:  MIBRT Annula Awards Gala and Dinner at Martins Crosswinds, Greenbelt, Maryland.
The MIBRT partnership with Prince George's County Economic Development Corporation, (PGCEDC) and U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and Electronics & Computer Software Export Promotion Council (ESC) and Washington Adventist University and number of Governments and Chambers in U.S. and in India.
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