India has resources for world-class arbitration centre, says Moily

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Singapore, Sep.8 (ANI): Union Minister M Veerappa Moily said on Wednesday that India has a comprehensive, contemporary and progressive legal framework to support international arbitration that is on par with the best in the world.

Speaking at International Arbitration Centre's conference on 'India: Prime Global Business Destination -- An Arbitral Perspective', Moily said: "Indian courts offer full support and encouragement for arbitration."

He said that every effort was being made to resolve problems that hinder working for arbitration in India, starting with amendment of certain provision of law to changing mindset of stakeholders including judges, arbitrators, lawyers and parties involved in such process.

Underlining the sophisticated legal system in India, which is party to the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law and the New York Convention that allows arbitral awards by courts in almost any country around the world, Moily said: "As the Indian economy develops with increasing international investments, the Indian universities would be encouraged to create a separate faculty or department for arbitration law as a specialised study and incisive research."

Commenting on Indian efforts at arbitration network amid growing international business presence in that country,

Stating India has the wealth of talent for building a world class arbitration centre, Singapore Law Minister K Shanmugam, on this occasion, said that his country would share its arbitration knowledge with India and it would be for India to see what part of it would be adaptable to its own situation.

In his address, Moily said it's been a difficult 20 months for the global economy. Many of the largest economies (the corporations along with the Governments) in the world are trying their best to trudge along and many of the smaller, developing economies have almost collapsed. There are a few bright spots, however, the major players being India and China.

He said that over the years, the Indian Government has been committed in its efforts to enhance and maintain a healthy growth rate and provide a conducive policy environment to both public and private enterprises, to invest and grow their business in the country.

Moily said the Government of India has liberalized the foreign investment regime substantially over the last decade. The foreign direct investment (FDI) today is allowed in almost all sectors, excepting a few sensitive areas such as defense. "Further, FDI is permitted in most of the sectors under the automatic route, except a few, where approval from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board is required."

"India has made aggressive use of fiscal and monetary policy, with particular focus on fiscal stimulus in infrastructure investment. Both the government and industry in India, betting on non-export driven sectors are hopeful that the country would be able to tide over the current slowdown faster than anticipated earlier," he stated.

Taking about the population advantage that should be a draw for businesses, Moily said: "The population of India and China which have (till recently) been a problem for the two countries has now proved to be a blessing in disguise. The growth that both these countries are seeing now is because of their large young working population.

He said mature markets across the world are aware about the importance of having a young and working population and its effect on economy. "It is a well known fact that a good well educated young working class can lift a nation against all odds and vice a versa."

Moily said that in any country, more critical for economic growth, however, is the rate of growth in the labour force, best estimated by projecting growth in the "working-age" population (age 15-60). India's advantages are amplified, here.

He stated the growth in India's working age population is expected to exceed its already rapid population growth until 2015. India's working age population increases until at least 2045, while China's working age population declines from 2020 to 2050. India has the potential to grow from contributing 2% of the global GDP to 16% of the GDP by 2039, by 2050 India's working age population will exceed China's by the same amount.

On growth in industrial sectors, Moily said: "In India, agriculture still remains the predominant sector in terms of employment and livelihood. Manufacturing however is the backbone of the economy. Even as these two sectors now grapple with the cyclical demand-supply syndrome now, the service sector appears to defy the recession and surge ahead to contribute a whopping 49 per cent of the GDP, growing at a healthy rate of 8-10 per cent over the last five years."

"The rise in the service sector's share in GDP marks a structural shift in the Indian economy and takes it closer to the fundamentals of a developed economy, where agriculture accounts for a relatively lower share," Moily stated.

Moily arrived here for a two-day visit to Singapore to study the Singapore International Arbitration Centre. He is scheduled to deliver a lecture to the Singapore business community on "India's Legal Landscape: Challenges and the Path Forward."

He would be visiting the Law Society and the Singapore Management University's Law School as well as meet Chief Justice Chan Sek Keong and Speaker of Parliament Abdullah Tarmugi. (ANI)

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