The Indian Government in a unique move has set up an investment facilitation agency that will provide a one stop window for providing all clarifications as well as information to international investors seeking to mobilise investments into various projects in India.
Invest India is the new agency set up jointly by the Department of Industrial Promotion & Policies of Ministry of Commerce and Industry and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce Industry (FICCI), an apex industry body.
“For quite some time the need was felt by the Indian Government to create an agency which could offer a handholding support to the investors especially in their dealings with State Governments and in getting approvals etc”, says Dushyant Thakor, General Manager of Invest India.
“In all countries there is a set up which supports investments into that country. These are Government run institutions and are typically funded by Government. The services they offer also are typically free of charge. In this case also the Government could have set this up as a part of the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion. However it was felt that to provide the necessary services that yield greater results it would be better if this set up was organised along the lines of private sector operations. Hence the concept of a Public-Private Partnership came up”, he further adds.
Apparently the decision to set up this organisation was taken over two years ago, but a general election in the middle and procedural requirements only pushed the process back. Invest India finally received the nod from the Cabinet and it was set up in the month of December 2009.
The organisation was launched by Mr Anand Sharma, Minister for Commerce and Industry on 23rd December 2009 and during the launch event he said ‘Invest India’, is the vehicle to guide investments into the country as overseas investors had seen that even in difficult times, during the post-meltdown period, the Indian economy had performed encouragingly.
He said, there was now a need for promoting foreign investments in India in a structured manner and provide quality input and support services to the investors, particularly the SMEs and family-owned overseas enterprises. “Invest India’, he said, would respond to this urgent imperative.
Invest India is a not for profit organization with FICCI holding 51 per cent equity and the balance 49 per cent shared by DIPP and all the State Governments. The involvement of the Central Government and the State Governments gives it great legitimacy. The organisation can take all decisions subject to approval of its Board and not wait for Government to take decision on such matters.
Being the official investment promotion agency that works hand-in-glove with the Government both at central and state levels, it stands a greater chance of delivering successes than most private sector organisations possibly could. The services rendered range from the information regarding Government policies, incentives being offered by State Governments, assistance to investors in seeking approvals either from the Centre or the State, finding business partners etc. In fact this organisation provides all the help that is needed to fructify in investment. Although Invest India is a not for profit organisation, it is not funded by the Government, so has to charge a nominal fee to sustain its operations.
More details on the investment facilitation wing can be found on www.investindia.gov.in.