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India will withstand meltdown: Bill Gates

Microsoft founder Bill Gates is confident that the recession would not have a long-term impact and India would continue to grow at good pace, report Chetan Chauhan & S Sharma.

business Updated: Nov 06, 2008 10:28 IST

Terming the global economic meltdown as a temporary phase, Microsoft founder Bill Gates was confident that the recession would not have a long-term impact and India would continue to grow at good pace.

Gates felt the global economy would be on track in the next six months and the fall in markets didn’t reflect true economic position. “The US’ economic recession is having impact in some countries, not all,” he told a packed auditorium at IIT Delhi, where he had come to launch Microsoft’s free software for students, Dreamspark.

Gates, who has now taken up philanthropy through the Melinda and BIll Gates Foundation, asked India to pump in more money for creating young “brilliant minds” by opening new IITs and universities to provide global level skills. The government has already announced that eight new IITs and 30 new world-class universities would be opened by 2012.

‘Obama will bring change’

Gates is currently on a four-day visit to India, which included fact-finding meeting on polio eradication and a trip to the Taj. While his country opted for change and voted in its first coloured President, Bill Gates was in Delhi’s sprawling slum Seemapuri visiting a nine-month-old afflicted with polio.

On Barack Obama, Gates said his election would bring freshness in the US administration and can lead to huge difference worldwide. He was amazed to find that US presidential elections had generated so much enthusiasm all over the world.

Gates appeared to have a lot of faith in Obama. “Even with a very challenging budget, Obama will deliver on key issues of public health funding. The US will be a even more key partner (in funds for public health),” he said.

Gates did not expect the change is US administration and the economic meltdown to affect his Foundation’s work.