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US CEOs flay red tapeism in India

Lack of infrastructure, bureaucracy and slow judicial process are the main impediments to attracting FDI in India

india Updated: Mar 03, 2006 20:26 IST

Lack of infrastructure, bureaucracy and slow judicial process are the three main impediments to attracting foreign direct investments in India, William Harrison, co-chair of the Indo-US CEOs' forum, said on Friday.

A day after submitting the forum's report on a new vision for India-US economic ties to Manmohan Singh and US President George W Bush, Harrison said US Inc was worried by lack of energy, airports, roads and ports in India.

"These are the basic things you look forward to when you come to invest in any country," Harrison told reporters.

He was sharing the dais with Tata Sons chief Ratan Tata, the other forum co-chair.

Tata and Harrison said the forum had identified six major areas for cooperation and from these six priority initiatives had been drawn up for fast action --

The action was aimed at forging a unique partnership to boost trade and investment ties.

The six areas of collaboration are infrastructure development, energy security, human resource development, technology exchange, trade and industry promotion and intellectual property rights.

Within these areas, some of the concrete plans include making Mumbai a financial hub for US companies in Asia, setting up a $5 billion infrastructure development fund, creating large special economic zones and making trade talks a success.

"The US and Indian economies continue to show growth despite complex challenges. The new vision of economic partnership is one of promise and mutual benefits, combined with challenges that can be met squarely and overcome," the report said.

The CEOs Forum was set up during Manmohan Singh's visit to Washington last year and has 10 members each from the two sides.

It was tasked with finding ways to boost bilateral economic and trade relations between the two countries.

Some of the representatives on the American side have such clout that they can pick up the phone and speak directly with Bush and key administration officials, or ranking lawmakers.

Besides Tata, the Indian side on the forum includes Mukesh Ambani of Reliance Industries, YC Deveshwar of ITC, Ashok Ganguly of ICICI OneSource, Deepak Parekh of HDFC and Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw of Biocon.

Its other members are Analjit Singh of Max group, Nandan Nilekani of Infosys, Prathap C Reddy of Apollo Hospitals and Baba Kalyani of Bharat Forge.

The US side includes Paul Hanrahan of AES Power to represent the energy sector, Stanley Warren of Cargil for agriculture and Charles O Prince of Citibank, who along with Harrison, represents financial services.

Additionally, David Coat of Honeywell, Harold McGraw of McGraw Hill, Steven Reinemund of Pepsi, Christopher Rodrigues of Visa, Thomas J O'Neill of Parsons and Anne M Mulcahy of Xerox are also its members.

First Published: Mar 03, 2006 14:53 IST