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Rediff.com  » Business » US-India treaty: USIBC launches jobs' coalition

US-India treaty: USIBC launches jobs' coalition

June 26, 2012 09:00 IST

HandshakeWith the negotiations for proposed bilateral investment treaty underway, the US India Business Council has launched the Coalition for Jobs and Growth to ensure the critical agreement is complete and ratified.

Announced at a USIBC briefing with US-BIT negotiators, the coalition would leverage the collective strength of industry, academic experts and the Indian American community to make sure this critical agreement is completed and ratified, a media release said.

"To be Co-Chaired by Ambassador Susan Esserman, the Coalition for Jobs and Growth would serve as the organising body to provide input to US negotiators and to promote support and understanding of the importance of a US-India BIT and its ultimate ratification by the US Senate," the USIBC said.

A member of USIBC's Board of Directors, Esserman is former Deputy US Trade Representative and currently partner at Steptoe and Johnson.

The Coalition would continue the work begun by USIBC's Trade and Investment Initiative in 2007.

USIBC had then first advocated for a bilateral investment treaty and succeeded in placing the BIT on bilateral agenda when the two countries announced BIT negotiations in 2008.

USIBC said bilateral investment treaties provide protection from arbitrary, discriminatory or confiscatory foreign government measures.

They foster a welcoming environment for capital inflows and serve as the foundation for investor confidence around the world.

India has more than 70 such agreements in force, while the US is party to more than 40 BITs worldwide, it said.

"A US-India Bilateral Investment Treaty is truly the 'next hill to climb' in the strategic partnership," said USIBC president Ron Somers.

"The BIT will engender greater cooperation and collaboration, protect and promote foreign investment and ultimately lead to economic growth and job creation in both countries.

"USIBC, through the Coalition for Jobs and Growth, is committed to informing negotiations and pushing forward on eventual ratification of a robust treaty," he said.

Lalit K Jha in Washington
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