Minister calls for greater ties between India, Maryland

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Hyderabad, Jan 22 (UNI) Union Minister of State for Defence M M Pallam Raju today called for strengthening business ties between Andhra Pradesh and Maryland in the US, which has a strong presence in Defence and security-related businesses.

Inaugurating the Indian Chapter of the Maryland India Business Roundtable Inc (MIBR) here, the Minister said, ''US businessmen could join hands with Andhra Pradesh for setting up public health and education institutions.'' He expressed confidence the Indian Chapter would help strengthen relationship between Andhra Pradesh and Maryland, which had a strong presence in sectors like biotechnology, software development and applications.

MIBR Co-Chairman Ronald D Watts said the US saw lot of business opportunities in India which was 'sure to grow by nine per cent in the future.

''India is no longer a sleeping giant. We prefer to do more business with India than China in view of its democratic structure,'' he added.

MIBR aimed to double trade with India in three years from the present 32 billion US Dollar for which it would organise eight trade missions during the year as against four held last year.

UNI SM VA DS GM 1541

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