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US seeks more reforms ahead of bilateral dialogue

business Updated: Jun 27, 2011 01:21 IST
Yashwant Raj

Ahead of the economic dialogue starting on Monday, the US has said India needs to push forward its reform agenda and remove barriers to realise the full potential of bilateral trade and investment between the two countries.

"US businesses are extremely excited about investing in India's markets and exporting more, but there are lots of barriers still," said undersecretary of treasury Lael Brainard, roughly equivalent to a secretary in the finance ministry, at a news briefing on Friday.

These barriers - market access, reforms and infrastructure - prevent India from getting as much foreign investment as other emerging economies, and deny its consumers quality goods and services, said the official. These and other economic issues will be on the table for discussions between the Indian delegation led by finance minister Pranab Mukherjee and US team led by secretary of treasury Tim Geithner, starting Monday.

Mukherjee will be accompanied by RBI governor D Subbarao and Sebi chief UK Sinha and Geithner will be have the Federal Bank chief Ben Bernanke, SEC chief Mary Schapiro and economic adviser to the President Gene Sperling.

"It will be the highest-level meeting in the economic round," said Brainard.