Obama, Modi to address industry captains tomorrow

New Delhi, Jan 25: Trade and economic issues, including visa, totalisation pact and impediments hampering investments, are likely to figure at tomorrow's US-India CEO Forum meeting, which will be jointly addressed by visiting US President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and Commerce and Industry Minister Nirmala Sitharaman are also expected to attend the meeting, which among other things is likely to focus on ‘Make In India’ campaign and ease of doing business.

Obama, Modi to meet CEOs on Monday
Cyrus Mistry of Tata Sons and David M Cote from Honeywell will co-chair the high-profile meeting.

Industry captains from Indian and the US will attend the meeting. Industry leaders who are expected to participate in the meeting include Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani, Bharti Enterprises chief Sunil Mittal, ICICI Bank MD & CEO Chanda Kochhar, Reliance Group Chairman Anil Ambani, Infosys CEO Vishal Sikka, Adani Group head Gautam Adani, Shashi Ruia, Chairman of Essar Group, Mahindra & Mahindra Chairman Anand Mahindra, Hari Bhartia, Co-chariman and and Director of Jubilant Life Sciences, Biocon Chairman and MD Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw and Sudhir Mehta of Torrent Pharma.

State Bank of India Chairman Arundhati Bhattacharya, Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) Chairman and Managing Director Dinesh K Sarraf and BHEL head B Prasada Rao too are part of the 17-member Forum.

The US team includes Indira Nooyi of Pepsico, Harold McGraw, Chairman McGraw Hill Financial and Ajay Banga, CEO Mastercard. Obama, who arrived here today on a three-day visit, and Modi will interact with CEOs.

The forum is likely to discuss bilateral business ties, particularly in the light of US being a major potential source of manufacturing investments. Critical issues, including visa impediments for professionals, intellectual property rights and bilateral investment treaty too may be discussed, sources said.

The meeting is significant in the light of Make-in-India initiative, which seeks to make the country a hub for global manufacturing, design and innovation.

India has already relaxed foreign investment caps and norms in various sectors including defence, insurance and pharmaceuticals. It also took a slew of other initiatives with a view to improving the business climate and attract foreign investment.

The bilateral trade between the countries stood at USD 61.64 billion in 2013-14. India has received USD 13.28 billion FDI from the US between April 2000 and November 2014. America is the sixth largest investor in India.


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