Monday, March 23, 2015 - 13:35
Amsterdam Mayor leads Smart City visit to India
This week Amsterdam Mayor Eberhard van der Laan is leading a delegation of Dutch companies, knowledge- and cultural institutions in a visit to India, the municipality of Amsterdam announced in a press release today. The delegation will visit New Delhi, Bangalore and Mumbai, and includes representatives from the Amsterdam ArenA, the Johan Cruyff Foundation, Cobra Museum and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra (KCO). One of the main purposes of the visit is to share knowledge on how to be a so-called Smart City - cities where technologies are used cleverly and resources are used efficiently. Last year the new Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, stated that he aims to create 100 smart cities. To reach this goal, he looks to cities that are ahead in this field, naming Amsterdam, Barcelona and Stockholm as examples. Amsterdam has had a city bond with Mumbai since 2012, the Dutch capital says. The relationship with India is aimed at strengthening economic relations, social and cultural exchange and administrative cooperation. "The cultural and business relationship between India and the Amsterdam metropolitan region continues to grow. It is our ambition to ensure that more Indian companies settle here," Mayor Van der Laan said. The Amsterdam ArenA joined the visit just over a year after signing an agreement with engineering firm Ecofirst and facilities management and security company Tenon with a goal of improving the sports infrastructure in India, including the possibility of building new stadiums there. "In our international business it is vital to build strong relationships, optimize our working methods to the local reality and create presence in the Indian market. These partnerships are vital for us and I look forward with great confidence to what the future will bring us,” ArenA CEO Henk Markerink said last February after signing the agreement. "In addition Amsterdam is a responsible capital and we can share or knowledge when it comes to city planning, mobility, water management and waste disposal. We can also learn a lot," Mayor Van der Laan noted. Another important aspect of the visit is to maintain relationships with Indian companies that are already established in Amsterdam and to attract new businesses. There are currently 90 Indian companies established in the Amsterdam region, which account for 22 thousand jobs.