India, US for early conclusion of bilateral investment pact
Washington: India and the US have expressed their commitment for early conclusion of a Bilateral Investment Treaty aimed at increasing investment and job creation in the two countries.
"The Leaders reaffirmed their commitment to concluding a high-standard Bilateral Investment Treaty that will foster openness to investment, transparency, and predictability, and thereby support economic growth and job creation in both countries," according to a joint statement on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's Summit Meeting with President Barack Obama here yesterday.
In terms of foreign direct investment (FDI), the US is the fifth-largest investor in India. As per official data, FDI from the US between April 2000 and July 2013 totalled USD 11.49 billion.
The treaty is expected to increase regulatory stability and reduce investor uncertainty, particularly during these challenging economic conditions.
Welcoming the increased engagement by experts from both governments, the two leaders underlined the need for expeditious progress to address all trade and investment policy issues of bilateral concern so as to remove obstacles and improve business environment in both countries.
"In this respect, both sides agreed to consider establishing a joint committee on investment in manufacturing," the statement said.
Singh and Obama were also committed to working toward a successful outcome at the World Trade Organisation ministerial conference in Bali. The four-day ministerial is scheduled to be held from December 3.
They discussed ways to strengthen bilateral efforts to promote energy efficiency, clean energy and address climate change.
The two leaders emphasised the dangers that high oil prices can pose to the global economy and the need to increase oil market transparency and emergency response collaboration through closer coordination and bilateral dialogue.
India imports about 79 percent of its crude oil requirements.
President Obama and Prime Minister Singh, the statement said, believe that the two countries should look to each other as partners of first resort in addressing global challenges.