The Republic of Djibouti recently introduced the CEO of Rushabh Sealink, logistics magnate Vishal P Mehta as its Honorary Consul General and celebrated the grand inauguration of its first-ever office in Mumbai at the prestigious ITC Grand Maratha Sheraton.
Djibouti, Africa’s third smallest country by landmass, plays a crucial role in international peacekeeping, hosting eight military bases from nations such as the USA, China, Japan, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, and the United Kingdom. This event marked a historic milestone, symbolising Djibouti’s strategic presence on the global stage.
Distinguished guests present at the ceremony included Vishal P Mehta, the Honorary Consul of the Republic of Djibouti, His Excellency Isse Abdillahi Assoweh, the Ambassador of The Republic of Djibouti, Honorable Minister of Shipping, Sarbananda Sonowal, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, V Muraleedharan, Vinod Tawde, General Secretary of BJP and Ashish Chauhan, Managing Director and CEO of the National Stock Exchange among many others.
Saie Vishal P Mehta, “as the world’s largest trans-shipment port, Djibouti facilitates 30 per cent of the world’s shipping vessels passing through to the Swiss Canal. Its significance as a refueling station and trans-shipment port highlights Djibouti’s importance in the global shipping industry.”
Hailing from the financial capital of India, Vishal P Mehta emphasised the synergies between Mumbai’s port-centric environment and Djibouti’s focus on shipping and transport. The ceremony, graced by the Shipping Minister as the Chief Guest, signified the opportune collaboration to promote both countries’ business, trade, and culture.
Expressed Vishal P Mehta, “the ceremony not only marks the inauguration of the Mumbai office but also underscores the growing diplomatic ties between Djibouti and India, fostering collaboration and goodwill on a global scale.”
His Excellency Isse Abdillahi Assoweh, the Ambassador of Djibouti, expressed his happiness on seeing Vishal P Mehta as the official extension of the Consul in India as another step in reinforcing the relations between the two countries.
“It is a matter of immense pride on the appointment of Vishal Mehta as the Honourable Consul General of Djibouti. This will go a long way in fostering stronger relationship between our nations, expanding beyond geographical boundaries,” said Hon Min of Ports, Shipping and Waterways Sarbananda Sonowal.
Said V Muraleedharan, Hon Minister of Foreign Affairs, “the appointment of Vishal Mehta will add to the cordial ties between India and Djibouti. India’s partnership with Djibouti is based on a genuine desire to work together for each other’s welfare and interest. More than 1000 Indian nationals are working in Djibouti… India always strives for the voice of Africa to be heard… This partnership has been an essential part of our relationship.
The appointment of Vishal Mehta opens up new avenues of collaboration between India and Djibouti. Medical tourism, Healthcare Pharma, IT, Digital Infrastructure and Renewable Energy are all potential areas where India can contribute immensely to the growth and development of Djibouti. I congratulate Vishal Mehta for taking up this new responsibility and wish him and his team all the very best.”
Added Vinod Tawde, National General Secretary — BJP, “I am here as Vishal Mehta’s friend. Vishal Mehta’s working inspired me to request Sarbanandaji and Muraleedharanji to attend this event. He has saved an immense number of lives during Corona… That speaks of his Individual Social Responsibility at a time when we otherwise speak of CSR… I wish him all the very best.”
Ashish Chauhan, Managing Director & CEO of NSE averred, “Vishal Mehta is a philanthropist as much as an astute businessman. His appointment will go a long way in forging the relationship between the two countries.”
“Vishal Mehta is the synonym for hope, progress and happiness. By appointing him, Djibouti unearthed a diamond from India,” said politician and President of Maharashtra State Minority Commission Haji Arfat Shaikh.
Nikunj Turakhia, President of Steel Users Federation of India said “I am very happy with the appointment of Vishal Mehta. He is very grounded. It is a win-win for both our countries.”
Suhas Warke, Special IGP, Law & Order Maharashtra Police said “This is a very good initiative for exploring business of India and Djibouti. I wish him all the best.”
Vinesh Mehta, President & Chairman, FAM, averred: “This is a proud moment for Gujaratis, seeing HE Vishal Mehta being appointed as the HC. I have known him for over two decades, and I know he will do his job very well.”
“Economic development in Djibouti is all about Logistics / Healthcare / Construction / Trading / Renewable energy / My attempt will be to ensure Indian business houses get complete access to investment in Djibouti that will soon be the Dubai of Africa,” sums up Vishal P Mehta.