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PM being economist works very well: FM

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, Apr 7 (UNI) Prime Minister Manmohan Singh being an economist ''works very well,'' according to Finance Minister P Chidambaram, who wants it to become a trend for the future.

''It works very well. When RBI Governor (YV Reddy) and I sit with the PM, we know we are talking to someone who is knowledgeable,'' Mr Chidambaram said in an interview to Straits Times of Singapore.

''Maybe, it should become the benchmark for the future,'' the Finance Minister said.

He made the remark in reply to a question on how he felt working with a PM who has both been the Finance Minister and the RBI Governor.

Dr Singh was FM from 1991 to 1996 when India launched its economic reforms and was RBI Governor during 1982-85.

Pointing out that Singapore also had a Prime Minister (Lee Hsien Loong) who has been Chairman of the Monetary Authority, Mr Chidambaram said, ''I am sure it works very well for Singapore too.'' Replying to questions, Mr Chidambaram said he was willing to hold any portfolio given to him. ''I have always enjoyed being a lawyer too,'' he averred.

Asked whether he would be happy handling foreign affairs, he quipped, ''Is anyone offering it to me?'' UNI SN RL KP1731

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