Finance Minister Sitharaman meets heads of FedEx, Mastercard, others during US visit : The Tribune India


Washington, April 22

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday met CEOs of large American firms like FedEx and Mastercard and discussed various opportunities for investment in India, which is the fastest-growing large economy in the world.

The Finance Minister is in the US to attend IMF-WB Spring Meetings 2022.

FedEx President and CEO-elect Raj Subramanian, during the meeting with the Finance Minister, mentioned that he is positive about India and has significant expansion plans, including in skilling.

Appreciating the government’s commitment to integrated development through the PM Gati Shakti Master Plan, Subramanian said the company is looking at R&D centres in India and the company has great opportunity to grow in the country.

Last year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched a Rs 100 lakh-crore national master plan for multi-modal connectivity that aims to develop infrastructure to reduce logistic costs and boost the economy.

PM Gati Shakti targets to cut logistic costs, increase cargo handling capacity and reduce the turnaround time. The plan aims to lend more power and speed to projects by connecting all concerned departments on one platform.

As per the Economic Survey 2021-22, India is projected to grow at 8-8.5 per cent during the current financial year ending March 2023.

The National Logistics Policy announced in the Budget is an important element for the strategy of ‘make in India’, Subramanian added.

Sitharaman also held a meeting with Accenture Chair and CEO Julie Sweet.

“Ms Sweet lauded the proactive & transparent approach of the GoI & said @Accenture is adding a presence in more Tier-II cities in India & focusing on upskilling talent to prepare for emerging opportunities. Ms Sweet also informed that 47% of their workforce in India are women,” the finance ministry said in a tweet.

The Indian government makes it a focus to listen to and support the business community while also taking steps to make India a great place to invest in, Sweet said.

During the meeting with Mastercard CEO Miebach Michael, Sitharaman informed him about the government’s commitment to digital financial inclusion with a focus on women and SMEs by developing world-class homegrown technology solutions.

“FM Smt. @nsitharaman enquired from Mr @MiebachMichael @Mastercard on how lessons from India’s #FinancialInclusion programme can be used to develop solutions for the world,” the ministry tweeted.

Mastercard highlighted its plan to set up huge data centres in India and the company’s focus on training and digitisation of small businesses.

In another such engagement, she met the global CEO of consultancy firm Deloitte, Punit Renjen.

“Mr @PunitRenjen mentioned that @Deloitte is expanding its India operations to smaller cities like Coimbatore & Bhubaneswar. Besides, he said, @Deloitte has developed tools to improve the access of rural poor to health facilities & also committed for #ClimateAction in India,” a separate tweet said.

The country is an attractive investment destination and this is going to be India’s century, Renjen said.

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