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Anand Sharma invites Canadian Pension Funds to invest in Indian Infrastructure projects

New Delhi: November 5,2012

In a bilateral meeting with Canadian Minister of International Trade and Minister for Asia – Pacific Gateway Mr Edward Fast, Union Minister of Commerce, Industry & Textiles, Shri Anand Sharma suggested that substantial pension funds in Canada – private and public – could be usefully channeled through the Infrastructure Debt Fund. It is to be noted that both the sides have finalised a tripartite agreement for an infrastructure debt funding mechanism linking both lenders and borrowers through the IDF. The IDF would source most of its funding from pension funds, insurance funds and sovereign wealth funds. Shri Sharma also highlighted the need to address the investment asymmetry. Indian investment in Canada is estimated at $ 14.2 billion and Canadian investment in India at nearly $ 4.3 billion. Owing to Canada’s healthy banking sector and private equity funds, Shri Sharma also encouraged greater Canadian investment into India.

Shri Sharma expressed satisfaction over the negotiations on Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA). “The negotiations on CEPA are proceeding smoothly, and we hope that it would be finalised by 2013,” said Shri Sharma. The sixth round of CEPA negotiations are going to be held in Ottawa from November 14-16, 2012. The fifth round of CEPA negotiations between India and Canada was held recently in New Delhi from 24th to 26th July, 2012.

Shri Sharma hoped that an early conclusion of Foreign Investment Promotion & Protection Agreement (FIPPA) between India and Canada would help in providing a fair and equitable treatment to bilateral foreign investments on a reciprocal basis.

The issue of Social Security Agreement was also discussed between Shri Sharma and Mr. Fast. Shri Sharma was also optimistic that the SSA is signed at the earliest. “This step would reinforce faith in the bilateral negotiation process,” said Shri Sharma.

The bilateral trade between India and Canada during 2011 stood at USD 5.216 billion as against USD 4.088 billion in 2010, registering an increase of 28.35% over the year 2010. In 2011, India’s exports to Canada showed an increase of 25%, while the imports from Canada registered an increase of 31.7%, over 2010. The total bilateral trade for the first eight months of this year stood at USD 3.640 billion – a 16.4% increase as compared to the same period for last year.


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