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India-US CEOs Forum with high level Government participation to be held on October 25, 2006

Washington, DC
October 25, 2006

A meeting of India-US CEOs Forum with high level government participation from both sides is to be held on October 25, 2006 in New York. 

Mr. Kamal Nath, Minister for Commerce and Industry and Mr. Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission, would be participating in the meeting from the Indian Government side. Mr. Carlos Gutierrez, Commerce Secretary and Mr. Allan Hubbard, Assistant to the President for Economic Policy and Director, National Economic Council would participate from the US Government side. 

Mr. William Harrison, Chairman of the Board of JP Morgan Chase and US Chair of CEOs Forum and Mr. Ratan Tata, Indian Chair of the CEOs Forum, CEOs of AES, Blackston Group, Cargill, Citigroup, Dow Chemicals, Honeywell, Lucent Technologies, Merck, Parsons Brinckerhoff Ltd., PepsiCo, Boeing etc are expected to participate in the meeting.

During the visit of President Bush to India in March 2006, the CEOs Forum had given its recommendations to the two Governments to strengthen bilateral economic ties. It was also decided that further meetings of the CEOs Forum would be organized in US and India to discuss measures to deepen the economic relationship. These meetings of CEOs Forum are meant to enable CEOs from India and US to discuss further steps needed with the senior Government representatives from both sides. 

In Government-to-Government discussions which will precede the CEO’s forum, Cabinet members from the two countries are likely to discuss, bilateral issues relating to the India-US Economic Dialogue, Knowledge Initiative on Agriculture, Trade Policy Forum, Energy Dialogue etc. 

India-US bilateral trade and investment has been growing rapidly. US exports to India increased by 35% to $ 9.5 billion in 2005-06 while US imports from India increased by 26% to $ 17.4 billion in 2005-06. India has also been receiving high portfolio investment in its stock market of more than $ 10 billion every year, a large portion of that comes from the US. US direct investments in India in both manufacturing and service sector are also growing rapidly. In recent years, Indian direct investments in the US has increased substantially with $ 1.3 billion investment in last two years. India and US Governments are actively engaged in deepening bilateral economic ties through various bilateral fora such as India-US Economic Dialogue, Trade Policy Forum, Financial and Economic Forum, Knowledge Initiative on Agriculture, High Technology Cooperation Group etc.