Indo-US cooperation to boost economic dynamism, says Rajnath Singh

Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday said that Indo-US cooperation will go a long way to restore normalcy and further boost economic dynamism.

His remarks came while he was addressing the ‘Indo-US Economic Summit’ via video conferencing today organised by the Indo-American Chamber of Commerce.

“This Summit is taking place at a time when the whole world is facing many economic and geopolitical challenges along with a global pandemic,” said the Union Defence Minister.

“Economic and technological cooperation between India and the United States became stronger in the post-Cold War era, much stronger during the global war against terrorism and still more robust alongside Indo-US strategic partnership,” said Singh.

The Defence Minister said the Foreign OEMs can set up manufacturing facilities individually or partner with Indian companies through a joint venture or technology agreement to capitalise on the ‘Make in India’ opportunity.

“I believe the time is ripe for Indo-American Business Cooperation to move forward from a buyer-seller relationship to a more meaningful and sustainable economic and business cooperation,” he added.

Speaking on the post-pandemic economic challenges, the Union Minister said that pandemic has brought newer challenges in terms of disruption to supply chains, the downturn in industrial activities, negative growth in the travel and tourism industry and there are no doubt Indo-US cooperation will go a long way to restore normalcy and further boost economic dynamism.

“We have formulated Progressive and Investor Friendly Tax Policies. We have said goodbye to Retrospective Taxation. There has been an increase in the trust between the Government and Industry in abolishing Retrospective Taxation. By doing this, we have rectified the mistake of previous governments,” Singh stated.

“There is a lot of scope for the American and Indian defence Industries for co-production and co-development. Indian industry can also supply components to American Industries,” he added.

While naming the American firms’ presence in the country, Singh claimed that the firms will majorly invest in Defence. “The American Firms such as Lockheed Martin and Boeing already have a major presence in India and I am confident that other American firms will find India as a major investment destination for Defence Manufacturing,” Singh said.

The minister said the government has taken steps to bring economic activities back on track. “Where there was a 24 per cent contraction in the growth last year, a jump of 20 per cent has also been seen in the first quarter of this year,” he added.

Speaking on the recovery of the economy after the lockdown, Singh said that this V shape recovery is a sign of the sound economic fundamentals of India. “You may know that while India became the 5th largest FDI recipient in 2020, the World Bank has a growth expectation of 7.5 per cent in 2022, which is one of the highest growth rates in the world,” he added.

The Defence Minister said due to COVID-19, worldwide supply disruptions, the downturn in industrial activity, almost standstill situation in the travel and tourism sectors, economic growth has suffered for two consecutive years.

“Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, we are preparing for ‘Dynamic Growth’ in this entire Decade along with FY-22,” Singh stated.

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