Vodafone has agreed to invest billions of dollars more: Sibal

Vodafone has agreed to invest billions of dollars more: Sibal New Delhi: Notwithstanding its taxation issues, British telecom major Vodafone is going to invest billions of dollars in India, according to Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal who feels that foreign investors are back in mood to invest in the country.

Sibal said investors' renewed confidence to pump money in India's telecom sector is due to the new policy that has a clear roadmap for next 20 years.

"Foreign investors have all come to me and said that they are very keen to invest more. As we talk, Vodafone has agreed to invest billions of dollars more in the sector itself. Vodafone chief came to me and said we want to expand," Sibal told PTI in an interview.

Significantly, Vodafone's move to invest more in India comes at a time when the government has initiated steps to have a conciliatory, out-of-court, settlement with it on its Rs 11,217 crore tax liability dispute.

Sibal insisted, however, that there was no connection between the two developments.

"No, no...It is nothing to with this. It is something to do with the environment that we have cleared for the next 20 years. We have policy which will apply for next 20 years and that policy is a liberal policy. We are going to have new merger and acquisition guidelines. We are now going to a uniform (Unified) licence," Sibal said.

The Minister said the new policy regime in the telecom and IT sector that has been put in place has started attracting foreign investors.

"On the ESDM (electronics manufacturing) side we have got proposals worth Rs 4,000 crore," he said.

PTI