Japanese delegation visits Kerala

Friday, 25 July 2003, 07:00 Hrs
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THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A team from Japan comprising senior officials of that country's leading firms like Toshiba Corporation and Daikin Industries landed in Kerala Thursday to explore investment opportunities.

Ikou Yasuda, senior professor of the Tama University Renaissance Centre, is leading the seven-member team that includes officials from East Japan Railway, Sumitomo Corporation, JSAT Corporation and NTT DoCoMo.

The team met state Tourism Minister K.V. Thomas on promoting Kerala as a holiday destination for Japanese tourists.

"We have visited Delhi and Bangalore. Kerala is the third and last destination. We did a lot of research on these places and selected Kerala," said Yasuda.

The visiting Japanese officials are undergoing a 10-month programme at Tama University to mould them to become future CEOs of their firms.

"We are happy to be here. Any investment decision that has to be made has to come from the managers who are here. Unless they take the issue to the top management, nothing will happen," Yasuda noted.

"For investment, Japanese companies will look at factors like the quality of labour, partners, infrastructure and living conditions," he said.

Another area where Kerala could score in the Japanese market is tourism.

"We are extremely happy with the beaches and this could certainly be a place where more Japanese could come. For that to happen, Kerala has to promote itself in Japan," said Toshiaki Baba, general manager of JSAT Corporation.

John Mathai, a senior bureaucrat of the Kerala industries department, said the visit in itself was excellent publicity for Kerala because on an eight-day India trip, the team was staying in this state for two days.

The Japanese will meet Chief Minister A.K. Antony Friday, Mathai said.
Source: IANS
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