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CII assures of investment in J&K to FinMin Nirmala Sitharaman

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CII assures of investment in J&K to FinMin Nirmala Sitharaman

On Friday Industry body CII assured Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman that the industry body will support investment activities in Jammu and Kashmir.

Earlier this week the Centre removed special status to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 and bifurcated the two union territories –Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.

CII President designates and MD and CEO of Kotak Mahindra Bank Uday Kotak said that “We would like to see investment across sectors in Jammu and Kashmir. CII has stated to the government and the finance minister that CII would support initiative for investment in the UT.”

After an hour-long interaction between CII members and Sitharaman on various aspects of the economy.

Kotak said that CII members expressed their views over various sectors and the finance minister gave a patient hearing and heard us with an open mind.

Mr.Koytak added that “We would like to see the economy grow faster,”

He said areas, where there is a need for support and boost, were discussed frankly during the meeting.

Kotak further said the finance minister told the CII that she would consider suggestions made by members.

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No better place to invest than in India: Nirmala Sitharaman

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Investors can find no better place in the world than India that has a democracy-loving and capitalist respecting the environment, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has said.

She also assured international investors at an interaction session at the IMF’s headquarters that the government was continuously working to bring reforms.

“It (India) is one of the fastest-growing (economies) even today. It has the best-skilled manpower and a government that is continuously doing what is required in the name of reforms, above all democracy and rule of law,” Sitharaman said on Wednesday.

Responding to a question on why investors should allocate funds for India, she said that even if the court system is a bit delayed, India is a transparent and open society.

The rule of law works and there are a lot of reforms happening, even those to cut down delays, she said.

“So you will not have anything better… democracy-loving, capitalist respecting environment… in India,” Sitharaman said at the event hosted by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry in association with the US India Strategic and Partnership Forum.

Responding to questions from major insurance companies, who urged her to remove the cap on investment in this sector, she said the government needs to understand what the expectations of the sector are other than removing the cap.

Sitharaman said she would be quite open to it and they could send her the details.

The Union finance minister, however, said she will not be able to give them an assurance at this point in time but will work on the matter.

Asserting that the government is engaging with everyone on a weekly basis and there is no trust deficit with the corporate sector and investors, she said there is a greater understanding that this government is willing to hear and also wanting to respond.

The government is committed to maintaining fiscal deficit in India, she said. To a question on the slowdown in the Indian economy, the finance minister said the government is taking steps to address problems in the “stressed” sectors

“Though the budget was presented in July, in a year when there was interim budget present before the election, we didn’t wait for the next budget to come in February of 2020, almost on a 10-day interval, we have been announcing one or the other intervention with which each of the stressed areas can be addressed,” she said.

Overall in order to boost consumption, the government has very clearly said public expenditure for infrastructure will be clearly front-loaded, Sitharaman said.

“Similarly, for increasing money in the hands of the people so that consumption can improve, I’ve requested all the building sector banks together with their partners, non-banking, financial companies to reach out to villages, reach out to districts and extend every kind of credit that they would want,” she said.

The two-prong approach makes sure consumption is boosted, both through spending on public infrastructure or by putting actual money in the hands of the people, and ensures the stress, which is specific to some sectors, is addressed, Sitharaman said.

This has to be a continuous system till the time the economy really shows a substantial uptick, the Union finance minister said.

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Details of investment in J&K would be available very soon: Nirmala Sitharaman

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The details of the government’s policy to attract more investments in Jammu and Kashmir would be available very soon, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said, listing out the potential the area carries for investors in sectors like tourism, handicrafts, silk, production of saffron and apple.

Sitharaman made the comments while responding to a question during an interactive session with investors at the IMF headquarters here on Wednesday. The event was organized by the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry and US India Strategic and Partnership Forum.

“We have started working in terms of making sure that the full potential of Jammu and Kashmir from various different aspects (is achieved),” she said.

The minister listed out the investment possibilities Jammu and Kashmir carries in different sectors like tourism, fine arts, handicrafts, woodwork, carpets, silk, production of saffron and apple.

 “I think sooner the details of it (new policy) will be available,” she said.

India on August 5 scrapped Jammu and Kashmir’s special status and bifurcated it into two Union Territories — Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.

In his address to the nation after revoking the special status given to Jammu and Kashmir, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said state companies, as well as private companies, will be encouraged to create jobs for the local youth in the region.

“So very many things are all being put together to see how best a plan can be done,” Sitharaman said.

Sooner, some kind of pattern would be worked out between the union home ministry and finance ministry and announced.

“Work is on,” she said, while responding to a question from a Dubai-based investor who is trying to mobilise funds to invest in Jammu and Kashmir.

“I want to know from your perspective, after the change in this state, is there any special consideration being given to a State that has historically missed out on global and international investments?” she was asked

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No economic slowdown as 3 movies earned Rs .120 crore : Ravi Shankar Prasad

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Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Saturday cited the earnings of three blockbuster movies to dismiss the economic slowdown. Addressing a press conference, Ravi Shankar Prasad said three movies collectively earned Rs 120 crore on October 2 and so, there’s no economic slowdown at all.

When Ravi Shankar Prasad was asked for his comments on the economic slowdown, he dismissed it with a laugh, referred to the movie’s data and said that the economy is sound that’s why the country earned Rs 120 crore from three movies.

“I was Information and Broadcasting Minister in former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s government and I am fond of movies. Movies have been doing huge business. Three movies released on October 2 and film critic Komal Nahta told me that the national holiday [Oct 2] saw earning of Rs 120 crore by three movies. rs 120 crore comes in a country which has a sound economy,” Ravi Shankar Prasad said.

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