India pitches for greater US investment

August 10th, 2011 - 6:18 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 10 (IANS) Nirupama Rao, India’s ambassador-designate to the US, Wednesday pitched for greater American investment and underlined the need to create more common ground between India and US to strengthen their relations.

“We have to reflect more deeply on our common concerns, enormous business opportunities and ability to take businesses beyond frontiers with a spirit of understanding and accommodation,” Rao said at a roundtable discussion organised by the American Chamber of Commerce here.

“Indian reform process cannot afford to forget the underprivileged people and policy framework would focus on bringing them to the mainstream,” said Rao, who was foreign seceretary till she was named as India’s next ambassador to the US. Rao’s tenture as foreign secretary ended July 31.

The CEOs of major US companies, including Boeing, Wal-Mart, Cognizant Technologies, GE India and Coco-Cola, participated in the roundtable. It was chaired by Atul Singh, Chairman, National Executive Board of the Chamber and president of the Coca-Cola Company in India.

Rao said that major changes were going on in the country’s economy and pitched for greater American investment in India.

In this context, she alluded to some recent policy shifts the Indian government is contemplating, such as the creation of Infrastructure Debt Fund, allowing FDI in agriculture supply chain and the formulation of a new direct tax code.

Investment climate in India would be further brightened with the unveiling of the New Manufacturing Policy, which seeks to enhance the share of the manufacturing sector from 16 percent, as of now to 25 percent in the next few years, she said.

At the same, Rao stressed that new models of sustainable growth and partnership between the two countries have to be identified to harness the enormous business opportunities that are developing.

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