India eyes FDI in engineering, defence from Czech companies

India has been working under a framework of an Indo-Czech Working Group in the area of Heavy Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing since 2013

Foreign investors make a strong comeback

Press Trust of India New Delhi
Eyeing greater economic engagement with the central and eastern Europe, an Indian delegation comprising top officials and industry leaders is on a visit to Brno, Czech Republic to attend a Joint Working Group meeting.

A top government official who is also a part of the delegation said India is "actively seeking" more FDI in areas like engineering and high technology, including defence, from countries in the Central and Eastern Europe, especially the Czech Republic.

"Initiatives like hike in the FDI limit and integrating India into a single market through the tax reforms by bringing legislations like Goods and Services Tax have enhanced the confidence of global investors in the Indian economy, which has emerged as the fastest growing in the world," said Girish Shankar, Secretary in the Department of Heavy Industry.

Keen on engaging actively with Czech Republic and other Eastern and Central European nations, India has been working under a framework of an Indo-Czech Working Group in the area of Heavy Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing since 2013.

The fourth meeting of the Joint Working Group (JWG) was held at Brno to coincide with MSV Brno Fair between October 3-6, wherein a review of the progress in bilateral ties was taken up and a roadmap for future cooperation was finalised.

"While we seek technology transfer from the eastern Europe, the Indian engineering industry which is upgrading fast on the high tech value chain, has positioned itself well in the Czech Republic. This is evident from the trade figures. Of the total Indian exports to Czech Republic of $523 million, the engineering accounted for $413 million," Shankar said after the meeting of the Joint Working Group.

The delegation of Indian officials and industry leaders shared with their Czech Republic counterparts the measures being taken by India to encourage foreign investments, particularly in areas of high technology, including capital goods and engineering under the government's flagship Make in India programme.

India's Ambassador to Czech Republic Krishan Kumar was also present at the JWG meeting. From the Czech Republic side, heavy duty trucks makers TATRA, ZLK, Bonotrans, T Machinery and SZU Engineering and Test Institute made presentations about stepping up their Indian engagement.

Chairman of EEPC India T S Bhasin said while the Indian engineering industry has come a long way in moving up the value chain, a lot more is required.

"Indian firms, even in the small and medium scale, want to adapt to the state of the art technology to stay competitive in the global market," he said.

First Published: Oct 03 2016 | 5:48 PM IST

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