India - Partner In Growth
Welcome to the September 17, 2015 bulletin of key policy decisions and high-impact news from India, presented by the Embassy of India, in Washington D.C.
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Govt. Approves 100% Foreign Investment in White-Label ATMs
The Union Cabinet has approved a proposal to allow 100 percent foreign direct investment in white-label ATMs through the automatic route. The decision is likely to result in faster growth of the white-label ATMs - set up by non-banking entities - as flow of foreign funds will now get expedited. 

Govt. OKs Spectrum Trading Policy
The Union Cabinet has approved a proposal to allow telecommunications companies to trade spectrum among each other. The decision is aimed to boost availability of frequencies to cellular companies to improve connectivity. 

Importers Can Raise Up to $20 Million from Overseas Lenders  
Relaxing the trade credit policy, the Reserve Bank of India said banks can permit resident importers to raise credit from overseas lenders up to $20 million per transaction for all items except gold. "With a view to providing greater flexibility for structuring of trade credit arrangements, it has been decided that the resident importer can raise trade credit in rupees after entering into a loan agreement with the overseas lender,"the Bank said.

Govt. Launches Online Certificate Program for Traders 
The Commerce Ministry has launched an online certificate program for exporters and importers. The program, called "Niryat Bandhu @ Your Desktop," will enable exporters and importers to learn the essentials of trading, the Commerce Ministry said in a statement. The objective is to reach out to new and potential exporters. 


Soon, industrial units will no longer need separate permission from local bodies to set up in an industrial zone in Maharashtra if they already have MIDC permission. The Government has decided to amend two Acts to boost the ease of doing business initiative of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.   

Brookings: PM Modi Makes India #1 in Commitment to Financial Inclusion
Prime Minister Modi's push for financial inclusion has enabled India to earn the top ranking in commitment to financial inclusion in the latest Brookings Institution's 2015 Financial and Digital Inclusion Project Report and Scorecard.The scorecard has four key parameters: country commitment, mobile capacity, regulatory environment and adoption of traditional and digital financial services.   

Goldman Pegs India Growth at 8%
India is likely to become the fastest-growing emerging market this year and its potential growth could rise to 8 percent over the next five years driven by technology, gains in education and ease of doing business, Goldman Sachs said. Goldman said these factors could be key drivers of growth and can contribute 3.6 percentage points to GDP growth annually. 

U.S. Ambassador: India-U.S. Defense Cooperation Reaching New Level 
India and the U.S. are poised to take defense partnership to a new level through co-development and co-production of technologies. "Over the last few years, the U.S. has signed $10 billion in contracts for defense sales to India," U.S. Ambassador to India Richard Verma said at the 11th Indo-U.S. Economic Summit. 

IBM Develops Solutions to Cater to Digital India
IBM said that India Software Lab, its product development center in India, is developing solutions to contribute to the Digital India program in multiple areas. The company's latest innovations can find applications in multiple sectors, including healthcare, education, finance and disaster management, said Kaushik Bhaskar, Vice President, India Software Labs, IBM India. 
U.S. Clothier Johnston & Murphy to Open 12-14 Stores in India 
Johnston & Murphy, an American clothing brand that has made shoes for U.S. presidents, is planning to open 12 to 14 stores in India with an investment of $2.2 million, as it eyes sales of $15 million over the next two to three years.