US firms eye big on infrastructure sector: USIBC

The American companies are particularly focused on $1.5 trillion investment opportunity in the infrastructure sector of India, besides other Indian sectors

The Dollar Business Bureau Infrastructure-The Dollar Business According to the US India Business Council (USIBC), besides eagerness to invest in India, the American companies are particularly eying at the $1.5 trillion investment opportunity in the infrastructure sector of India. The Government of United States seems to be very eager to invest in India and this willingness of the US became evident in the statements made by the key US officials on Tuesday. Praising the transforming business environment in India, Mukesh Aghi, new president of US India Business Council (USIBC), on Tuesday, stated that ‘India is open and ready for investments and the US is eager to move in’. The president of USIBC, the largest bilateral trade association connecting India and the US, further informed that the American companies are particularly eyeing at the $1.5 trillion investment opportunity in the infrastructure sector of India. Jack Lew, the US Treasury Secretary, also made a similar kind of statement, which also says the US government is encouraged by the Indian economic reforms started by the new Indian government. However, there is a long way to go for India in fully addressing the concerns of American businesses, Lew added, responding to a question at a Congressional hearing in Washington. The Treasurer Secretary also said that he was informed by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, about the Government of India’s moves towards clearing tax related issues that have been obstacles to the American businesses. Earlier this week, the USIBC had also urged the Government of India over the passage of the Insurance Laws (Amendment) Act and also stressed on the provisions for uplifting the cap on Foreign Direct Investment from 26% to 49%. In this regard, Mukesh Aghi had said that opening of India’s insurance sector sends a crystal clear signal that India is open for business at a time when economic opportunity is certainly welcome. Stressing on the need for lifting cap on FDI from 26% to 49%, Aghi said, “While India’s insurance market has experienced impressive growth in recent years, the FDI limitations have restricted insurers' ability to raise capital efficiently.” Access to domestic and new foreign pools of long-term domain capital will provide financial stability, Aghi said, adding that giving an uplift for FDI will further enhance the industry’s ability to protect productive assets through efficient and cost-effective distribution channels across rural and urban India. These statements by the key officials of apex trade association and the US Treasury department, make evident the fact that, the United States is very keen on investing in India and at the same time, the officials’ views also expose the US government’s concerns over supposed impact of challenges in India, on the American business prospects in India.  

This article was published on March 18, 2015.