Australia India Business Council (AIBC), the peak body facilitating bi-lateral trade and investment between the two nations and Australia India Travel & Tourism Council (AITTC), the leading and only bilateral tourism council in Australia, marked a milestone in the Australia-India bilateral relationship with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) at Sofitel Wentworth Sydney to collaborate on travel and tourism initiatives.
Under the MoU arrangements, AIBC will further enhance and promote travel and tourism business opportunities between the two nations, tapping into AITTC’s key competencies in this sector. This MoU will see the two councils working together for the common and mutually beneficial goal of promoting the bilateral business including travel and tourism in both countries.
Commenting on the milestone, AIBC National Chair Sheba Nandkeolyar said: “The Australia Inda Business Council is proud to partner with the Australia India Travel & Tourism Council on this bilateral travel and tourism initiative. We are confident that AITTC will be able to further drive and enhance the bilateral travel and tourism relationship between our two countries. Indeed, with India and Australia having recently moved to liberalise travel between the two the countries, this is an important step in bilateral relations.”
AITTC Chairman Sandip Hor said: “Indeed, travel has enormous potential to build on the people-to-people links and relationships that are so central to facilitating the bilateral business relationship. Through travel, the two countries can deepen our understanding of each other, our cultural dynamics and build bridges. AITTC is committed to highlighting and promoting travel and tourism oportunities between the two countries and further bolstering bilateral engagement. We see this MOU as a significant step to bring the two organisations closer and add more value to the bilateral relationship.”
During a brief speech, Consul General of India Mr B Vanlalvawna expressed his support the initiative and belief that bilateral tourism opportunities were rapidly increasing. Consul General encouraged more Australians to visit India and believed that the MoU was a step in the right direction.
During his speech Mr Paul Myler, Assistant Secretary of India and Indian Ocean – DFAT spoke about the proposed launch of the India Economic Strategy 2035 and the focus on certain bilateral opportunities including travel and tourism – which he said would be important cornerstones for this relationship. He appreciated the business-focussed transformation that AIBC had taken recently, and said that the MoU was reflective of this transformation.
The MoU signing event – sponsored by AITTC partner ACCOR Group – was attended by senior Government and Industry dignitaries, including; Ms Jodi McKay, MP; Ms Rhonda Piggott, DFATs NSW State Director; Mr Robert Siy, Austrade Adviser, Tourism & Regional Investment, Trade & Investment Group; Deputy Consul General, Chandru Appar; AIBC Chairman Emeritus Mr Neville Roach; Former AIBC National Chair, Mr Dipen Rughani; AIBC State President Ms Barbara Ward; AIBC NSW Vice President Pallavi Sinha; and representatives from AITTC among others.
AIBC was founded in 1986 and is the only national body representing bi-lateral trade and investment relations between Australia and India. The AIBC is a national membership organisation with active chapters in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth and Canberra and maintains close relationships with federal and state government agencies, the diplomatic corps and industry bodies, and showcases opportunities to the Australian business community through an active program of events throughout Australia.
Founded in 2012, AITTC represents the passion and enthusiasm of organisations and individuals from across the travel and tourism industry in Australia and India, keen to enhance and influence bilateral tourist traffic movement between two nations. It’s the only body driving bi-lateral travel and tourism relations between Australia and India. Its membership represents a wide spectrum of the industry from airlines, hotels, tour operators, travel agents, tourism bodies to travel media professionals. AITTC aims to work through its members to ultimately see growth in number of tourists stepping on both the countries.