After showing no interest in previous six events, investment in Modi’s home state is on the priority list of US companies
GANDHINAGAR : Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to US already seems to have started paying dividends and the first beneficiary is his home state Gujarat. The US has indicated its keenness to be a partner country for its forthcoming Vibrant Gujarat Global Investors Summit slated to be held in Gandhinagar from January 11 to 13 next year.
This indication was given by Tom Vajda, Consul General at the American Consulate in Mumbai on Friday when he told media persons that the US has already sent a formal proposal to the state chief minister Anandiben Patel in this regard.
The US government which had denied visa to the Gujarat chief minister had shown no interest in the previous six summits, a bi-annual event which bore the distinctive mark of Modi’s helmsmanship as chief minister of Gujarat. The invitation to Gujarat for the seventh summit due early 2015 is an indication of its changing stance. Vajda, who was in Gandhinagar to attend a seminar on ‘urban design and planning’ which forms part of the run up of events leading to the summit, said that Gujarat was high on the investment priority list of US companies.
“There is growing interest in US about economic opportunities in India and vibrant Gujarat is an acknowledged platform supporting the Indo-US engagement. Within India, Gujarat is seen as a frontline investor friendly state”, he added.
The 2015 edition of Vibrant Summit so far has seven nations participating. These are Japan, Australia, Singapore, UK, Netherlands, Canada and South Africa.
The Consul General pointed out that US firms possessed expertise in many sectors which extended beyond smart cities.” India’s infrastructure investment requirements are estimated in the range of 1.5 to 2 trillion USD. US firms have the expertise as well as the interest to make a contribution and are willing to contribute in it.
He observed that after Modi’s ‘Make in India’ pitch in the US, there is a growing interest. “There are already 18 US firms having their presence in Gujarat. During his ‘Make in India’ pitch, Modi promised to remove all the hurdles for investment. If that happens, I am sure that more US firms will come to India,” said Vajda.
R K MISRA