The IGCC is Germany's largest international chamber of commerce. With several branches in India it plays a pivotal role in the promotion of business dealings with Germany. Bi-lateral trade reached over $3 billion last year, according to IGCC's president, Atul Bhagwati. The large number of workshop participants was welcomed by the Germans. "We are touched and overwhelmed by the interest shown by the Indians," said Dieter Munn, deputy secretary of state in Schleswig-Holstein.
The workshop was opened by India's Minister for Renewable Energy, Krishna Kumar. As usual he was voluble and as committed to renewables as ever. "I congratulate the IGCC for organising this landmark event for wind energy. I'm sure that this will be an important breakthrough in expanding the vistas of Indo-German friendship," he said. "We value German technology and investment. We realise that Germany is the foremost nation in quality consciousness and reliability of manufactured equipment." He added that he hoped Indo-German collaboration would find a significant presence in India's renewables programme.
Workshop participants were addressed by Klaus Rave, head of energy and nuclear safety in Schleswig-Holstein. He talked about his state's experience in wind energy, referring to successful hybrid wind and solar power plants. "We strongly believe in the future of hybrid systems," he told the audience. "We are here on a long shot. We understand that sustainable development has to be based on sustainable co-operation."