Foreign companies see a “lot of turnaround” in India and a “lot of positive attitude” is building towards it, according to the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) which held interactions with their counterparts of Germany and France over the last few days.
CII Director General Chandrajit Banerjee said the process of clearances in India has been streamlined and predictability has been brought about in taxes, setting the positive tone for foreign investments.
“We are seeing a positive attitude towards India. People are seeing a lot of turnaround stories. People are talking about how quickly they have been getting permissions and being facilitated to move fast on the ground in India,” he told PTI.
He based his observation on the interactions he and other Indian business leaders had with their counterparts in Germany and France, alongside the visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to these two countries.
Banerjee, who was here in connection with the international Hannover Fair, said the top executives of Indian companies who held interactions with their counterparts in Germany and France are like ambassadors of India talking about the “turnaround situation” in India.
“There is a lot of positive attitude that is building towards India. We do see a lot more coming into India in terms of overseas investments,” he said.
Asked whether he was suggesting that the investor sentiment has changed, Banerjee replied, “Not only the sentiment, one has to see results.”
He said the sentiment had “changed sometime back” and “we are seeing results because they (foreign companies) are talking about how quickly they are getting permissions to start operating and doing business in India.”
When pointed out that rules and regulations are still a problem in India, he said, “it is work in progress in many areas.”
He said clearances have been streamlined to a “large extent”. Referring to the land acquisition issue, the CII DG said “there are things which are being worked upon.”
At the same time, he said, “there are many things which have been done. It is a process. What we are saying is that there are already results in many areas of that process which is really creating a change of attitude towards India.”
His attention was drawn towards some Indian business leaders saying that much is still not happening on the ground. “It takes time (to translate decisions into action),” he replied.
Citing areas where things are happening positively, Banerjee said states are competing and attracting investments. “Some states have done very well. Some of the states have done well on land, some have done well on labour, some states have done well on permissions,” the CII DG said.
While talking about the ‘ease of doing business’ in India, he said the last Budget has made the roadmap on taxation pretty clear and done away with ‘adhocism’.
“When you talk about ‘ease of doing business’, taxation comes pretty much up on that. Earlier, we used to talk about adhocism in tax. (After the budget) there has been clarity given on tax. So that is a very important signal,” Banerjee added.
Asked whether the industry really believes that there is predictability on taxation issues, he said, “it is not believing, one is seeing it in action. Predictability in taxation system is pretty much clearer today.”