President Obama in India: Obama Raises IP Issue as Modi Promises Better Governance

USIBC Summit addressed by both US President Barack Obama and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi

Must read

New Delhi – US President Barack Obama along with the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a meeting of the US-India Business Council (USIBC) on the second day of the US President’s visit that was attended by top corporate leaders of both the countries.

Indian leader Modi promised to remove “remaining uncertainties” along with an open business environment and predictable tax regime while the visiting President Obama voiced the concerns of US businesses about trade barriers and intellectual property issues which they face when doing business in India.

“In knowledge-based economies, entrepreneurs and innovators need to feel confident that their hard work and, in particular, their intellectual property will be protected,” said Obama.

Citing trade figures, Obama noted, “Of all America’s imports from the world, about 2 percent come from India. Of all of America’s exports to the world, just over 1 percent go to India — 1 percent to over a billion people.”

Comparing the US trade with China which is “about $560 billion a year,” Obama said, “We do about $100 billion a year in trade with India, which is a great improvement since I took office,” adding, “That gives you some sense of the potential both for the kind of growth that India might unleash, and the potential for greater trade between our two countries.”

Obama reiterated defense agreement concluded during the visit on “defense cooperation with a new technology and trade initiative so that Indian and American companies can jointly develop and produce new defense technologies.”

The US and India would also have “a bilateral investment treaty that would facilitate Indian businesses making more investments in the United States, and US businesses making more investments here in India, the US President affirmed.

Pledging USD 4 billion in lending by US banks, Obama said the US is ready to help India grow by working with it in development of infrastructure like railways, ports, roads and clean energy power plants.

Punctuated with repeated applause, Obama announced, “a series of US initiatives that will generate more than $4 billion in trade and investment with India and support thousands of jobs in both of our countries. Specifically, over the next two years, our Export-Import Bank will commit up to $1 billion in financing to support “Made-in-America” exports to India.”

“And OPIC will support lending to small and medium businesses across India that we anticipate will ultimately result in more than $1 billion in loans in underserved rural and urban markets. And our US Trade and Development Agency will aim to leverage nearly $2 billion in investments in renewable energy in India,” continued the US President.

On the other hand, Indian Prime Minister Modi promised reforms to suit the US business interests saying, “You will find a tax regime that is predictable and competitive. We have removed some of the excesses of the past. We will now address the remaining uncertainties.”

President Obama also applauded the positive role his team was playing and was present in the audience calling out, “Secretary of Commerce, Penny Pritzker; the Administrator of the US Agency for International Development, Raj Shah; the President and CEO of our Overseas Private Investment Corporation, Elizabeth Littlefield; and the Director of the US Trade and Development Agency, Lee Zak.”

Concluding on a positive note, President Obama said, “The next time I come to India, I expect we will have made more progress.”

More articles

Latest article