India - Partner In Growth
Welcome to the December 31, 2015 bulletin of key policy decisions and high-impact news from India, presented by the Embassy of India, in Washington D.C.
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Picking Indian Partners Now Easier for Foreign Defense Firms
In a boost to the "Make in India" program, the Government has announced easier offset norms for defense deals that give greater flexibility to foreign firms in choosing their Indian partners. Under the new rules, the Defense Ministry empowers foreign firms to change their Indian Offset Partners, providing a level playing field to Indian vendors in capital acquisition.

Govt. OKs Bills on Commercial Courts, Arbitration 
The Government approved two bills aimed at creating commercial benches in select high courts and amending a law on arbitration for speedy settlement of high value business disputes. An arbitrator will now have to settle a case within 18 months. After 12 months, restrictions will be put in place to ensure that arbitration does not linger. 

New Guidance For Contract Management of Public-Private Projects 
The Department of Economic Affairs has developed mechanisms to equip Project Authorities in providing adequate guidance and online interactive toolkits for effective and proactive management of public-private partnership projects. 

Reserve Bank Sets Up Forex Helpline for Start-Ups
The Reserve Bank of India has created an email helpline to provide regulatory advice for start-ups at a time when they are increasingly engaged in cross-border transactions. "Start-up enterprises usually undertake a wide range of cross-border transactions including those related to investment," the Bank said. 

Govt. Approves Climate Change Projects Aimed at Helping Women
The eighth National Steering Committee on Climate Change approved several projects for funding that will lead to the economic empowerment of 15 self-help groups per village and benefit about 6,900 women. 

2015: The Year India Became the Fastest-Growing Big Economy 
2015 will go down as the year when India emerged as the world's fastest-growing large economy. Some highlights:  Real GDP in the first half of the fiscal year grew at 7.2 percent;  Forex reserves topped of $352 billion as of Dec. 1;  Foreign direct investment inflows increased to $17 billion in the first half of fiscal year 2015-16;  Foreign investment limits were raised in defense, real estate and insurance.

Report: Indian IT Industry Heads for $350 Billion by 2025
During the past decade, the Information Technology and Business Practice Outsourcing industry in India grew to $132 billion from $28 billion. The next decade promises to be just as big. The sector business is set to scale $350 billion by 2025, according to a recent report by Nasscom-McKinsey.

Big U.S. Medical Device Firms Travel to India, Meet Govt.
A medical device trade mission from the USIBC comprising representatives from Boston Consulting Group, Abbott, Johnson and Johnson, GE Healthcare and other U.S companies visited India and held meetings with the Ministries dealing with Health, Chemicals & Fertilizers, Commerce, Finance, and External Affairs. The trade mission highlighted the opportunities for collaboration in MedTec sector via private-public partnerships between the Indian government, Indian researchers and US-based MNCs.  

India to Join U.S., Japan In Top 10 Largest Members of IMF
India will be joining the U.S., Japan and France along with other emerging markets peers as the top largest 10 members of International Monetary Fund. "The United States Congress approval of these reforms is a welcome and crucial step forward that will strengthen the IMF in its role of supporting global financial stability," IMF managing director Christine Lagarde said.

Wistron Follows Fellow Taiwanese Manufacturer Foxconn to India
India is on the radar of global electronics manufacturers. After the entry of top contract manufacturer Foxconn, it's the turn of the $20 billion Taiwanese maker Wistron Corp. to tap into the country. The two companies will be manufacturing at a new factory in Noida in Uttar Pradesh where they are targeting investments of $200 million.