Indo-American Chamber of Commerce (IACC) recommended that the present offset regime should be recast and remodeled to incorporate provisions that will enable Indian companies to derive maximum advantage.
In a presentation made at the Indian business leader's interface with visiting 11-member delegation of Business Executives for National Security (BENS), U.S., here today, IACC said the private sector's share in offset contracts signed till date is 65 percent. These are mainly in the areas like fuselage, cabins, tail cons, overhaul and repair facilities, simulators and training facilities and ground handling equipment.
BENS is a U.S.-based nonpartisan organisation comprised of senior business and industry executives who volunteer their time and expertise to address the national security community's most pressing challenges. It has over 450 senior business and industry executives, who volunteer their time and expertise.
It supports the U.S. government's efforts in tackling other prominent challenges such as cyber security and domestic terrorism. BENS, for nearly four decades, has been a trusted partner whose work has built a more effective and efficient military, saved billions in taxpayer dollars, and improved operations that protect the homeland.
"We need a shift in areas covered under offset to optimally use the offset contracts. We are impressing upon the ministry of defense to come out with a list of areas, technologies, products, and skills that need investment. The other suggestion is to move away from the present regime of measuring the value of the offset to gauging the outcome since that will reflect whether the offset clause has served its purpose or not. Also, Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) should have the freedom to invest in pre-defined areas so that the scope of the policy is widened," the chamber said.
Dr. Lalit Bhasin, Executive Vice President, IACC said the scope and opportunities for trading and investment between India and the US is more than even before in the light of some of the flagship programs initiated by India like Make in India program, Digital India, Smart City and Startup India, which are designed to bring about deepening of the manufacturing and digital space in India.
"Our defense expenditure is going up so also expenses towards aviation and aerospace. The U.S. can legitimately look forward to have its share in India's growing requirements in these areas," he said, while inviting the U.S. to invest in manufacturing, defense and skill development.
He also highlighted the Rule of Law guaranteed by the Indian Constitution, which puts India ahead of other countries in safeguarding the interests of investors and international business community.
The 11-member U.S. delegation, led by General Norton Schwartz, USAF (Ret.), President and CEO Business Executives for National Security (BENS) inquired about ease of doing business in India, sector specific areas that need investments, steps that are taken by both the central and state governments in attracting investments and the present position in relation to energy security and services sector.
The Indian side also explained about the new aviation policy 2016, which would unveil the Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS), designed to keep the airfare affordable by freezing the fare at Rs. 2, 500 for one hour flight. This would help several tier II, III and IV cities to come in the aviation map. As a sequel to this program, many new airports and helipads are going to come up in the country.
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