Ladies and Gentlemen,
Despite a promising start, 2011 was a year of slow and fragile
recovery. the year 2012 started on a promising note amidst hopes that
the global financial crisis was at a turning point. unfortunately,
events have proved otherwise. Europe continues to be plagued by
persistent recession and high levels of unemployment. the eurozone is
under immense stress. the economic upheaval in europe could have dire
consequences, not only for europe, but also for most global economies.
The hospitality industry''s performance is directly related to economic
growth and investor confdence. unfortunately, the economies on which we
depend are shrouded in uncertainty.
Business travellers are an important segment for our hotels and
business sentiment has been on a progressive decline in india in the
past year. infation and high interest rates are impacting economic
growth and GDP forecasts have been revised downwards. Foreign investor
confdence is at a low ebb due to the recent unfriendly government
policies, corruption scandals and a stalled economic reform agenda. the
recent standard and Poor''s rating downgrade is refected in the growing
uneasiness of foreign investors. Most investors are waiting and
Despite short term challenges, the long term outlook for the Indian
hospitality industry is positive. A country as diverse as India with a
strong historic and cultural heritage will always be sought after by
international travelers. Multiple centers of economic activity are
emerging rapidly in India thus creating a growing demand for domestic
customers who value quality and are prepared to pay for superior
service and accommodation.
The development of Human Resources continues to be a priority for the
Company. We can claim with pride that the oberoi Group has trained
some of the best people in the hospitality industry. Former employees
have made successful careers, not only in our industry, but in banking,
insurance, healthcare and other service industries.
The oberoi Centre of Learning and Development (oCLD) has been
responsible for training young talent since 1968. Many of our General
Managers and senior executives are graduates from this institution.
As I have said in the past, infrastructure is a key to economic
development. Most cities in india are deficient in power and water.
Despite assurances from the Centre and state Governments there appears
to be no significant improvement.
Global warming is changing the climate on all continents. the burning
of fossil fuels, particularly coal and oil, is responsible for climate
change. it is our endeavour to harness solar and wind power to reduce
our reliance on power generated by fossil fuels.
I thank all those who work for the Company for their hard work and
dedication. I also thank my colleagues on the Board for their advice
and continued support.
15th June, 2012