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Pranab wants G20 countries to act against protectionism

By Abdul Nisar

New Delhi, Sep 17 (ANI): Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Friday said the G20 will need to coordinate policy actions against protectionism in a manner that can ensure strong, sustainable and balanced growth.

"The immediate spheres of such coordination (between G20 member countries) are macroeconomic policies and exit strategies, pace of regulatory reforms to ensure financial stability without affecting prospects of growth, keep international trade open and avoiding protectionism," said Mukherjee at a financial crisis conference here today.

Earlier this month, the US State of Ohio banned outsourcing of state IT contracts to foreign companies following Washington's decision to hike visa fee for H-1B and L1 categories.

Union Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma had earlier on Tuesday said the move by Ohio to ban outsourcing has come as a disappointment and is not welcome at all.

Finance ministers of G20 countries would meet next month, which will be followed by the fifth G-20 Summit of heads of states in South Korea on November 11 and 12.

"As clearly indicated by the current global crisis, no country is insulated from global economy and the crisis is turning out to be much deeper and broader than expected," said Mukherjee.

"It began as financial crises, which then became a general economic crisis, it is also becoming an employment crisis. As clearly indicated by the current crisis, no country is insulated and it is turning out to be much deeper and broader than expected," he added.

The measure mooted by Washington has been viewed as a blow to Indian IT companies, which have been tapping opportunities in numerous sectors in the US.

India's back-office outsourcing sector is estimated to have grown 6 percent to 12.4 billion dollars in the last fiscal. (ANI)

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