Mayor's Office Press Release
Mayor Turner, Partnership Lead Trade Mission to New Delhi and Mumbai, India to Grow Business, Cultural Ties Delegation to Focus on Innovation Opportunities Between Houston and India
November 11, 2018 -- Mayor Sylvester Turner and the Greater Houston Partnership will lead a trade and investment mission to New Delhi and Mumbai, India from November 9 to November 18. The mission will focus on promoting Houston's advantages for investment and trade and enhancing key government and business relationships between the Houston region and India. Targeted business sectors include energy, life sciences, innovation, logistics/transportation and space as well as tourism. The delegation will also meet with high-level government officials and representatives, as well as exchange best practices.
“India, close behind China as one of the most populous nations in the world, is a prominent partner with Houston in business development, trade, culture and tourism,” said Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner. “Our city is gloriously dynamic, thriving, and diverse partly because of the influence of India. We will use this mission to strengthen these connections and explore new ways of boosting the economies of Houston and the Republic of India.”
Houston is a sought-after location for global firms seeking a location to establish their Americas headquarters. In 2017 alone, 41 foreign-owned firms opened or expanded operations in Houston, up from 25 the prior year. In addition, more than 5,000 Houston-based firms are now doing business abroad, including twenty-eight Houston firms that operate 69 subsidiary locations in India. To capitalize on these key relationships, the delegation will host a series of forums to exchange best practices and intellectual capital in the target business sectors.
“Houston is uniquely positioned as a key business hub within the Americas region, not only as a location to manufacture and export, but also as a strategic partner in the exchange of technology, expertise and best practices with our international counterparts,” said Susan Davenport, Senior Vice President of Economic Development with the Greater Houston Partnership. “India is an important market for business and trade, as well as a key partner as Houston expands its innovation sector and works to attract technology companies to the region.”
Houston is the fourth busiest gateway for trade between the U.S. and India. Additionally, India is Houston’s 10th largest trading partner with $4.3 billion in trade. From 2017 to 2018 year to date, trade between Houston and India increased by 36 percent.
The delegation’s visit to India comes at a time of accelerated momentum for Houston and its rapidly-growing innovation ecosystem including the announcement of the Houston Innovation District in Midtown Houston. In addition, the Texas Medical Center, the world’s largest medical district, announced the TMC3 expansion, a 30-acre translational research campus set to break ground next year.
Station Houston is a startup accelerator aiming to transform Houston into a world-leading hub for technology innovation and entrepreneurship. While in India, Station Houston will establish innovation exchange opportunities for Houston with Indian founders and entrepreneurs during meetings with the top Indian innovation hubs.
“Houston is a city built on industry and innovation. In today's world, that means reimagining industry through the use of digital technology,” said Gaby Rowe, President and CEO of Station Houston. “At Station Houston, we partner with enterprise and investors to accelerate the growth of those digital solutions. As the most diverse city in the U.S., it is also important that our ecosystem of technology, innovation and entrepreneurship reflect the global inclusion of Houston. Our efforts during this mission are a wonderful step toward both of those goals.”
Houston is the most racially and ethnically diverse metro in the United States; more than 145 languages are spoken in the region. Houston and India also share strong cultural ties. Nearly 82,000 people living in the Houston metro were born in India and close to 150,000 Houstonians identify as Indian-American — the largest Asian ethnic group in the region. In addition to business and trade opportunities, the delegation will also highlight Houston’s world-class quality of life and cultural amenities.
“India is now the fifth-largest producer of international visitors to Houston. In fact, Houston received 60,417 visitors from India in 2017 that generated more than $122 million in direct economic impact on the city,” said Jorge Franz, Senior Vice President of Tourism with VisitHouston. ““Indian travelers enjoy Space Center Houston, our luxury shopping and our incredible culinary scene. I invite all Indians to consider Houston for their next travel destination.”
Led by the City of Houston and the Greater Houston Partnership, the delegation also includes representatives from Station Houston, VisitHouston, Indo American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Houston, among others.
Follow the mission on social media using #HoustonMission.
Greater Houston Partnership works to make Houston one of the world’s best places to live, work and build a business. It represents 11 counties: Austin, Brazoria, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Liberty, Montgomery, San Jacinto, Walker and Waller. With more than 1,200 member organizations, the Partnership represents approximately one-fifth of the region’s workforce. Visit the Partnership at www.houston.org.