US woos Punjab, Haryana firms to make investments
The US wants Punjab and Haryana-based firms especially in life science, textile and auto parts sectors to invest there to further strengthen trade and economic ties between the two nations. “There is a strong life science component in Punjab area here. So this is the one sector which we see a lot of growth opportunities and another is auto parts,” Embassy of USA, Commercial Officer, Paul Frost said while addressing media in Chandigarh on Tuesday. However, he said the US was also looking at other sectors including textile, IT services, pharmaceuticals from India to make investments in America. The US Department of Commerce's Select USA Programme is going to hold its first ever India road show starting October 13 till 16 which will be held in Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and Kolkata. Officials of US embassy will also hold meetings with local politicians of Punjab and Haryana and representatives of local industry associations as part of its programme to attract investments from India. Frost said a delegation from the US will also visit India to provide information to potential investors in Chandigarh to help them understand where the investment opportunities lie for them. “Delegation will also have subject matter experts to explain to Indian investors how they can be successful in the US. 14 economic development officers will also be here to answer questions of investors,” he further said. When asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi who sought US investments into India during his US visit, Jonathan Kessler, North India Coordinator, US embassy, said that it was important for the US and India relationship that mutual investments in each other's economies would make both countries grow. Select USA programme was launched in year 2011 to promote business investments into the Unites States. India is now the fourth fastest growing source of investment in the US, with $11 billion of investment. Indian firms employ around 44,000 American workers, and export more than USD 2 billion worth of goods from United States. The number of Indian companies operating in the US has increased from estimated 85 in 2005 to over 200 companies today. “We see in many cases Indian companies which invest in US use it as hub to expand operations to the entire western hemisphere,” said Frost. Each road show will feature a half-day seminar with sessions by America professionals on investment visas, legal and financial issues, investment incentives and successful investment strategies, followed by one on one consultations with a range of participating US states and localities, officials said.