India is becoming a “laboratory” for American companies: US expert

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India is turning into a “laboratory” for the US companies, not only to explain the company’s presence in the country but also to reinvent in terms of substantiality and disruptive-technology, an expert said as a panelist at a conference held to discuss the ways to boost the bilateral trade investments.

At the third edition of the ICCR-Houston India conference, various other panelists seemed to be in rhythm about the limitless possibilities of economic ties between India and the US. The panelists also emphasized that investment in various emerging industries such as digital payments, e-commerce and startups can further boost business on both sides.

The business event was held last week under the name ‘Make in India–The Inside Story’ and was attended by several senior officials from India and Texas state of the US.

“India is becoming a laboratory for US companies, not only to explain their presence there but also to reinvent themselves in sustainability and disruptive-technology,” Djordjija Petkosk, lecturer and senior fellow at Wharton Legal Studies & Business Ethics, University of Pennsylvania and advisor to World Bank, said.

“Also, an important step is to expand business in other emerging economies globally,” Petkosk told PTI.

Sanjeev Sanyal, Principal Economic Adviser at India’s Ministry of Finance asserted the development of a new India, an economy based on innovation and rule of law.

“Economic fundamentals in India are strong, and the challenge is to push it into an even higher growth trajectory,” said Sanyal.

While Sachin Chaturvedi, Director General, Research and Information System for Developing Countries, India, expressed his views on the financial inclusion programs from the government such as Jan Dhan Yojana, banking reforms and Corporate Social Responsibility activities in India.

Sandip Sen, Global CEO of Aegis Ltd, a private entity, said investment should be done in various areas of emerging industries.

“There are emerging industries and opportunities to invest in it including digital payments, e-commerce, startups, and Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning,” said Sandeep.

Consul General of India in Houston, Anupam Ray, discussed the role of Houston India conference as a unique platform for business development.

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner mentioned about Houston being the 4th busiest gateway for trade in India and the US and pointed to a need of a direct flight between Houston and India.

“A direct flight will help grow the bilateral trade relations between Houston and India,” he said.

Conference Chair and CEO Expedien, Jiten Agarwal, put some emphasis on the recent shipments of petroleum and Liquefied Natural Gas from Texas and several commercial deals that have taken place as a result of the networking during conferences since its inception in 2017.

During the discussion, the experts affirmed the progress of the business relations between India and the US.

“India has progressed from a reactive to a proactive society, which has led to the stability of the economy from a security perspective,” Air Vice Marshal (retd) Arjun Subramanian said.

Makarand Paranjape, Director of Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla, India, said the alliance between India is natural and is only thwarted by external forces.

“Indian diaspora has become a critical mass in the US, that going forward, the friendship between the two countries will only grow further,” he said.

The event, lasting a whole day, was sponsored by the Consulate General of India, Houston, Economic Diplomacy Division, Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India, Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) and Expedien.

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