Posted by William Mullane | February 1, 2017
Members of Boise’s Economic Development Community met with The Consul General Of India, Venkatesan Ashok, at the SBDC Accelerator in Boise on Wednesday, February 1st. Based in the Silicon Valley of San Francisco, the Consul General was on his first visit to Idaho’s Treasure Valley. He was accompanied by Karen Parnell of the Idaho State Department of Commerce. The stop in Boise was part of a four-day trip designed to introduce the Ambassador to Idaho. The Indian Consulate in San Francisco serves the States of Alaska, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, and Territory of Guam.
The Consul General discussed India’s focus on and need for infrastructure development in India’s 700,000 villages spread across 29 states. Industries of interest include Renewable Energy, Water and Waste Management, Farm Technologies, Agriculture and Agro-processing, Bio Technology, and Pharmaceuticals.
The Indian economy has been growing at an average rate of about 8.8% over the last three years. The Indian Government gives a high priority to the development of infrastructure in highways, ports, railways, airports, power, and telecom. In 2015, India had a positive goods trade balance of $23 billion with the United States. Main exports to India from the US include agricultural products, aircraft, and machinery. Main imports to the US from India include precious metals and stones, textiles and pharmaceuticals.
In 2015, exports from Idaho to India ranked 18th with a value of $28 million. Imports to Idaho from India ranked 21st with a value of $14 million. A large portion of Idaho’s exports to India are Semiconductors and Industrial products.
Consul General Venkatesan Ashok Bio and Profile
Ambassador Venkatesan Ashok graduated in Civil Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi and joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1982. The Ambassador has held diplomatic assignments in Hong Kong, Malaysia, China, Austria and Sri Lanka, apart from postings in the Ministry of External Affairs in different capacities. He was Director of External Relations
in the Department of Atomic Energy between 1995-1998 following which he was appointed as India’s Alternate Governor and Alternate Permanent Representative in the International Atomic Energy Agency, Vienna. He was the Division Chief of Central Europe in the Ministry of External Affairs before his assignment as Ambassador of India to the Republic of Zimbabwe between March 2008 – June 2011. Ambassador Ashok served as Ambassador of India to the Czech Republic from August 2011 – September 2014. He has taken charge as Consul General of India in San Francisco w.e.f. 21 November 2014.
Ambassador Ashok is married with one son. He speaks Chinese, English and several Indian languages. He has authored a book, Dasavatara, apart from several technical articles. His interests include reading and music
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