India has invited US investors to help finance big infrastructure projects in the fast-developing nation as India is planning to raise $1 trillion in infrastructure financing by 2017.
"There is new opportunity for US investors for work in this area," finance minister Pranab Mukherjee told a joint press conference with US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner at the end of the second meeting of the US-India Economic and Financial Partnership in Washington.
"American companies still face barriers in India in sectors such as banking, insurance, manufacturing, multi-brand retail and infrastructure," Geithner said. Easing those barriers "would be an important step toward integrating our economies," he said.
Reserve Bank of India Governor D. Subbarao and US Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke also participated in the meetings Monday and Tuesday.
A joint statement issued at the end of talks said India and the United States have agreed to work together to expand trade and investment links between their two economies, and to develop and strengthen their financial systems.
They would also "work together in the G-20 on an effective mutual assessment process to bring about strong, sustained, and balanced global growth."
The joint statement said "leveraging their combined knowledge, experience, and shared interests, the two agreed to a robust agenda" for the coming year that includes deeper engagement in three key areas: Macroeconomic challenges, Financial sector reforms and Infrastructure finance.
The United States, the joint statement said, is "committed to making the investments in technology, skills, and infrastructure necessary to maintain and enhance US competitiveness in the global economy."
On its part, "India intends to take steps to marshal private and public saving to meet the infrastructure needs of a rapidly growing Indian economy," it said.