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India Trade Mission Update: 40000ft Above Mumbai

November 12, 2008

A strong delegation from FedEx led by Mike Ducker, President FedEx International, landed in Delhi on Monday.  We had the opportunity to meet with the trade mission that FedEx is jointly coordinating with US Commercial Service.  A very good interaction with US Ambassador to India followed.  Ambassador Mulford promoted the opportunities that lie ahead in the US-India relationship especially as it relates to enhancement of trade.  As he called it – while the government-to-government relationship gets deeper, the true driver will be the continued development of people-to-people and business-to -business relationships.

Today (Tuesday, Nov 11), we had visits to the operations, sales calls, meetings with government officials, etc.  The Director General of Foreign Trade in India today announced that exports declined year over year in October – the first time in many years.  Having said that, there is a general positive feeling about long-term, potential growth in India.

We are on our way to Mumbai now.  A sign of infrastructural challenges in India is evident as we are now in a one hour holding pattern waiting to land in Mumbai!  You may know that India signed open skies agreements in the recent past and number of airlines competing to fly into and out of India (not to mention intra-India carriers) have multiplied and the airport infrastructure has not kept pace.

More on infrastructure in my next post – that will be my topic of my speech at World Economic Forum India Economic Summit next week.

Signing off from 40000 ft in the air somewhere over Mumbai….

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