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'Indian IT cos supported 2.8 lakh jobs in US last year'

Last updated on: July 27, 2012 13:21 IST

'Indian IT cos supported 2.8 lakh jobs in US last year'

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Lalit K Jha in Washington

Indian IT companies supported as many as 280,000 jobs in America last year amid a gloomy employment scenario in the US and have invested a whopping over five billion dollars in foreign direct investment through acquisitions and green-field projects, according to India's top envoy in Washington.

Addressing the Asia Society in Washington on Thursday, Indian ambassador to the US, Nirupama Rao said: "Our IT companies supported 280,000 jobs in the US last year.

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Photographs: Reuters

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"The IT companies have invested more than $5 billion in FDI through acquisitions and green-field projects.

"The unemployment rate in the tech-space in this countryis much lower than in manufacturing and that is where the effort is concentrated we believe today -- to get back the jobs in manufacturing to this country," she said.

Acknowledging that India's trade and economic relationship with the US has not scaled the heights reached in US trade and economic ties with China, she said there are goals yet to be achieved in this area.

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Tags: FDI , US , China , India

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"The voices of Indian companies and business interests are often unheard in the audio stream of voices from the US side who are constantly urging India to 'do more' on the reform front," she said.

In this crescendo from the American side, is the political economy and anthropology of India understood sufficiently? she asked.

"There is no question of the tide of economic reform in India being reversed."

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"Look at the history of reform in India from 1991 onwards. Successive governments have come and gone, but the direction of reform has not been reversed, ever," she said.

"Do not take us at face value. When the chips are down, our system responds very well. As our Prime Minister told Secretary Clinton when they met in Delhi in May, 'the message I would like you to carry is that India remains open, and the climate (of reform) will not be disrupted'.

"The India Story is definitely not over," the ambassador said.

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Photographs: Daniel Munoz/Reuters
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Observing that the Indian economy continues to be one of the two fastest growing economies in the world despite the fall in growth rates in the last one year, she said notwithstanding continuing uncertainty in the global economic situation, India's economy is in some ways better placed than those of many other nations.

"The fundamentals are strong. The long-term high growth trajectory for India is underpinned by several favourable factors -- high savings and investments rates, a growing and young labour force, sharply rising adult literacy, rising per capita income, 3G connectivity, talented human resources, particularly engineering and managements skills.

"Further, our private sector is strong and innovative, with capable leadership and organisation," Rao said.


Image: Nirupama Rao.
Photographs: Rediff Archives
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