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India welcomes Ivanka Trump at business summit

  • Published at 03:19 pm November 28th, 2017
India welcomes Ivanka Trump at business summit
[caption id="attachment_230932" align="alignright" width="258"]Advisor to the US President Ivanka Trump speaks during the Global Entrepreneurship Summmit at the Hyderabad convention centre (HICC) in Hyderabad on November 28, 2017.<br /> The Global Entrepreneurship Summmit will take place from 28th to 30th of November. / AFP PHOTO / MONEY SHARMA Advisor to the US President Ivanka Trump speaks during the Global Entrepreneurship Summmit at the Hyderabad convention centre (HICC) in Hyderabad on November 28, 2017 AFP[/caption]

India rolled out the red carpet on Tuesday for Ivanka Trump, daughter of the US president, who was set to attend a business summit in the southern tech hub of Hyderabad, where thousands of policemen stood on guard.

Ivanka kicked off the global business summit calling for better opportunities for women entrepreneurs battling heavy odds around the world.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi joined her in the opening of the US-backed Global Entrepreneurship Summit which New Delhi is hoping will further boost political and economic ties with the United States under the Trump administration.

Ivanka, wearing a bright green floral dress, said fuelling the growth of women-led businesses and closing the gender entrepreneurship gap could help expand global GDP by 2%.

"Women still face steep obstacles to starting, owning and growing their businesses. We must ensure women entrepreneurs have access to capital, access to networks and mentors," Ivanka said to loud cheers from a packed audience in a heavily-guarded conference centre.

In developing countries, 70% of women-owned smaller businesses were being denied access to capital, she said, leading to a near $300 billion annual credit deficit for them.

GES is an event conceived by former US President Barack Obama. It has previously been held in countries such as the United States and Turkey, but this year's edition is the first under the Trump administration.

The theme of the conference this year is "Women First, Prosperity for All." More than half the participants at the summit are women, and all-female delegations are representing countries such as Afghanistan, Israel and Saudi Arabia.

[caption id="attachment_230933" align="aligncenter" width="800"]Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (L) and advisor to US President Ivanka Trump shakes hands after they formally innagurate the Global Entrepreneurship Summmit at the Hyderabad convention centre (HICC) in Hyderabad on November 28, 2017.<br /> The Global Entrepreneurship Summmit will take place from 28th to 30th of November. / AFP PHOTO / MONEY SHARMA Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and advisor to US President Ivanka Trump shakes hands after they formally innagurate the Global Entrepreneurship Summmit at the Hyderabad convention centre (HICC) in Hyderabad on November 28, 2017 AFP[/caption]

Billboards

Billboards with pictures of Ivanka dotted many parts of Hyderabad which is also home to major US firms such as Microsoft. In recent days, authorities took beggars off city streets in a clean-up drive before the meeting, media said.

More than 10,000 police officials were deployed in the city and sniffer dogs as well as "spotters," or men trained to detect any suspicious activity or people, were on stand by, a police officer said.

On the sidelines, Ivanka held talks with Modi, as well as Indian foreign minister Sushma Swaraj. Later she toured the conference centre with Modi and met a few entrepreneurs, before watching traditional Indian dance performances in the inaugural session.

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