Group appoints chair to drive forward city’s Asian businesses

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Sham Sharma wants help develop thriving economy in Wolverhampton

THE newly-appointed chair of a forum for Asian businesses has spoken of his desire to develop a thriving economy in Wolverhampton.

The Wolverhampton Asian Business Forum was launched last autumn and aims to give local organisations a stronger voice and enable them to share information and forge better links with influential organisations across the city.

It will help ‘map’ Wolverhampton’s Asian business community and identify the big issues, problems and opportunities affecting them which major organisations including Wolverhampton City Council may be able to help address.

Sham Sharma, who was elected chair of the forum at its last meeting, said: “I am glad that the city council has extended its hand to our organisation to both help and further develop our businesses.

“We are all aiming for the same thing – that is to create jobs and develop a city-wide thriving economy.”

The new forum is being supported by Wolverhampton City Council’s Economic Development Team, but the steering group led by Mr Sharma and Vice Chair Min Mangat will drive it forward.

Councillor Peter Bilson, Wolverhampton City Council’s Cabinet Member for Economic Regeneration and Prosperity, said: “As a council we want to improve our engagement with important business communities in Wolverhampton.

“The Asian business community contributes significantly to the employment and economy of our city and it is important that we work closely with these businesses to listen to concerns and issues, and collaborate on business agendas.”

The next task for the Steering Group is to develop a wide-ranging action plan to improve business support, employment, training, procurement, planning and other key issues highlighted at the last forum meeting.  These have been collated for inclusion into developing action plan.  

Jay Patel, Wolverhampton City Council’s Head of Economic Development, said: “We are pleased that a number of new businesses attended the most recent forum. There is a real desire to move the forum forward, and with the Chair and Vice Chair now elected, the Steering Group can develop an action plan to really improve things for our city’s businesses.”

The next meeting of the Wolverhampton Asian Business Forum is on Wednesday February 29, 2012 at The Shed, Woden Road, Wolverhampton.

To find out more about the group, please log onto the city council’s business engagement portal www.finditinwolverhampton.co.uk and follow the links for the business forums.

 

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