Welcome to the February 5, 2015 bulletin of key policy decisions and high-impact news from India, presented by the Embassy of India, in Washington D.C.
High-Impact News

Govt.: eBiz Platform to Integrate All Services by May 31  


The eBiz platform, which seeks to provide a one-stop-shop for online government-to-business services to investors, will fully integrate the services of all Central ministries and departments by May 31, Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion Secretary Amitabh Kant said. 



India's Envoy to U.S., Dr. S. Jaishankar, Appointed New Foreign Secretary      


Dr. S Jaishankar, India's Ambassador to the US, has been appointed as India's next Foreign Secretary.  The announcement was made following a meeting of the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister. Dr. Jaishankar, a 1977-batch IFS officer, will serve in his new role for two years. Before being posted in Washington, Dr. Jaishankar has served as India's Ambassador to China, and was also the High Commissioner in Singapore. 

India Tops 2015 Credit Suisse Emerging Consumer Scorecard                 

Consumer optimism in India has seen a sharp turnaround, leading to a top ranking among nine nations surveyed by Credit Suisse, thanks to a stable government and easing inflationary pressures.The survey included Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa and Turkey 


Indian Diaspora, U.S. Firms Invited to 'Make In Madhya Pradesh'
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has invited Indian diaspora and the American business community to share their expertise and capabilities with his state in areas such as IT, agriculture, business and social sectors. Chouhan invited industries and entrepreneurs to "Make in Madhya Pradesh," drawing upon Prime Minister Modi's "Make In India" campaign, while addressing the U.S. audience at the Lincoln Center, New York.
Aero India 2015 Air Show Set for Feb. 18-22  

The Aero India 2015 air show will be held from February 18-22 at Air Force Station, Yelahanka, Bengaluru. This will be a critical show, following on India's opening of its defense sector to foreign director investment.
Key Policy Decisions

Govt. Accepts Court Order in Vodafone Case


The Government accepted the order of the High Court of Bombay in the case of Vodafone India Services Private Limited, implementing a major correction of a tax matter that will improve investor sentiment. The Cabinet decision will bring greater clarity and predictability for taxpayers as well as tax authorities, thereby facilitating tax compliance and reducing litigation on similar issues.


Spectrum Auction for 2100 MHz Band Set for February 

The Government has approved a spectrum auction in 2100 MHz band along with the 800, 900 and 1800 MHz bands. The reserve price for the 2100 MHz band is $601 million pan-India per MHz. The auction of 2100 MHz band is expected to raise $2.8 billion, of which $940 million should be realized in the current financial year.

Govt. to Bring Transparency to Green Product Procurement               

The Government is bringing new transparency to procurement of green products."As far as tendering is concerned, many alternative proposals are being considered so as to bring transparency. ...the methods, procedure and criteria (for procurement) has to be same. That's a long pending issue and the government is seriously addressing those issues," Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said.

Govt. Restarts Panel on Semiconductor Manufacture                  


The Government has restarted a committee focused on setting up semiconductor wafer fabrication projects. These projects are a critical pillar required to promote electronics system design and manufacturing in India aimed at stimulating the flow of capital and technology.


Govt. clears HDFC Bank's Proposal To Raise $1.61 Billion                  

The Government has approved HDFC Bank's capital-raising plan that would result in an inflow of foreign investment worth $1.61 billion from foreign investors. The meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, approved the HDFC Bank's proposal that will raise its foreign holding to 74 per cent.

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