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Infosys says China plans stuck in red tape
March 04, 2003 12:58 IST
Plans by Infosys Technologies Ltd, India's number two software service exporter, to enter the booming China market have become stuck in bureaucratic red tape, the company's chairman said on Tuesday.
More than a year after Chinese Premier Zhu Rongji travelled to India and approved a request by Infosys to start a software development centre in Shanghai, no permission has been received from Chinese authorities to begin work on the project, N R Narayana Murthy said.
"I have realised that China's bureaucracy is as difficult as any other bureaucracy and it can thwart the efforts of anybody," he told a meeting of corporate executives in Singapore, answering a question about the company's China plans.
"However, we have started a representative office in China and we are working very hard and hopefully we will get permission in a few months to start a development centre."
Zhu approved Infosys's Shanghai plan after touring the headquarters of Infosys in Bangalore during a visit to India in January 2002.
Following a slowdown in the United States, Indian software companies are aggressively eyeing other markets, including China, which accounts for a negligible share of their software exports.
India's main software body has said China presented a promising market waiting to be tapped by local companies and the Asian giant is not a threat to India's software exports.
Unlisted Tata Consultancy Services, India's biggest software exporter, and Satyam Computer Services, the number four exporter, are among Indian firms to have set up development centres in China.
"Our own view is this: that operating in China is not easy. While in India you have certain problems in terms of delays, bureaucracy and all that, but in China the transparency is not very high, and if you are straightforward then it's not easy," Murthy said.
Infosys shares were trading 0.98 per cent lower at Rs 4,175.25 on Tuesday.
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