Hyderabad: Industry lobby Assocham has urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to remind President Donald Trump that if Indian IT firms have got a good foothold in the US, American top notch firms like Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Apple, Coke and Pepsi are getting quite a liberal market access in India without any restrictions.
“In a technology driven and free market global economy, governed by rule-based multilateral World Trade Organisation, major trading partners should abstain from unilateral restrictions on flow of trade in goods and services. After all, the global economy is inter-dependent,” the chamber said, expressing concern over a host of restrictions on visa for Indian IT professionals in the US.
“It is a matter of concern that in the name of America First, restrictions are sought to be slapped on Indian IT firms, which are creating jobs in the US as well. Moreover, the software solutions the Indian firms develop for the world market are built around the platforms and tools of the American technology majors. Such a thing should be conveyed to the American President when our Prime Minister meets him during his impending visit to the US”, the Assocham secretary general DS Rawat said.
Assocham said, India is among the fastest growing economies in the world, riding on the young consumers ever willing to spend on the global brands without restrictions from the government. Besides, the country is on a major digitisation drive, throwing a world of opportunities to the likes of Facebook, Google, Apple, Microsoft and Twitter.
“Several of Indian infrastructure projects involving traffic and ticketing, customer relationship management, billing and the telecom backbone is running on combination of several hardware-software tools, platform and solutions, bulk of which is sourced from the US companies.
Nobody in India, including our political leadership, grudges this. Thus, India is a truly an open and globally -integrated economy. This is what must be told to the new US administration, and there is no need for India to play on a defensive wicket.
The industry body said even in the IT services, it is not only the Indian firms like TCS and Infosys which are outsourcing to the American clients but scores of American companies which have set up huge centres in cities like Pune, Bengaluru, Gurgaon, Chennai and Hyderabad for their global clients. “Yes, they do create jobs for Indians, but also repatriate billions of dollars as profits and India is fine with it. Thus, it is absolutely unfair to target Indian firms which are facing increasing pressure in the US through different non-trade measures like visa fee and other unrelated levies”.
With its expanding aviation market, India is a huge market for the American and European aircraft makers, besides offering opportunities in the financials. The market access has been given liberally even in agriculture.
“It is thus a matter of concern that in the name of America First, restrictions are sought to be slapped on Indian IT firms, which are creating jobs in the US as well.
Moreover, the software solutions the Indian firms develop for the world market are built around the platforms and tools of the American technology majors. Such a thing should be conveyed to the American President when our Prime Minister meets him during his impending visit to the US”, Rawat said.
India runs its overall trade gap of over $105 billion in goods alone with rest of the world, being liberal with its imports which aggregated $380 billion in 2016-17 while exports were about $275 billion. “We give much more market access to the world than we enjoy elsewhere,” the chamber said, adding the US corporates are immensely benefiting by doing business with India and Indian companies and that must be conveyed to the US administration”.