Business Today
Loading...

PM Narendra Modi scripts a program with global tech titans

The prime minister has cut through the bureaucratic maze with one-on-one meetings to increase the comfort level of global CEOs for doing business in India.

SPS Pannu | October 1, 2015 | Updated 08:23 IST
PM Narendra Modi scripts a program with global tech titans
Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella (second left), Cisco executive chairman John T Chambers, Qualcomm Executive Chairman Paul E Jacobs and Google CEO Sundar Pichai (right) during the Digital India and Digital Technology dinner function in San Jose, California.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to the US has been successful on the business front with global InfoTech giants committing themselves to give a big push to the Digital India campaign.

Modi's visit to Silicon Valley has been contrasted by analysts with the that of Chinese Premier Xi Jinping, who invited US tech leaders to a meeting during his US visit in the previous week but excluded Google and Twitter, whose services have been banned in China.

Modi on the other hand came across as a warmer, friendlier and more open leader. India's red tape has been a major deterrent for doing business despite the huge potential of the market.

The PM has cut through the bureaucratic maze with one-on-one meetings to increase the comfort level of global chief executive officers (CEOs) for doing business in India.

Google announced that it would offer free Wi-Fi in 500 Indian railway stations, and Microsoft pledged to help bring low-cost broadband to 5,00,000 villages.

Paul Jacobs, executive chairman of Qualcomm, termed the PM's digital initiative as extremely exciting and motivating while announcing a $150-million fund to support innovation in Indian start-ups.

The opportunity of the India market has become a focus for US tech companies as more Indians come online, including 100 million in the past year, but there are still nearly 1 billion Indians who do not have Internet access.

A senior Railways official said that the tie-up with Google for the Wi-Fi project "is a giant leap forward in upgrading facilities at railway stations".

Modi had also assured CEOs of major US corporations such as GE that India is easing the way for doing business.

More proof of this has emerged now with the World Economic Forum (WEF) raising India's rank on its competitive index by 16 rungs to the 55th spot.

Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Raghuram Rajan on Wednesday described Modi's foreign visits as bringing about a very positive change in the world view for India.

"What we need to do is back up his visits with action on the ground which reinforces the good impression that is created," Rajan told a news channel.

(In association with Mail Today bureau)

  • Print
  • COMMENT
BT-Story-Page-B.gif
A    A   A
close