Centre batting for Indian businesses abroad: Jaishankar

Mumbai: The Indian government is batting for the country’s businesses abroad, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar said here today.

He was speaking at the inaugural event of the two-day ‘The Gateway of India Dialogue’ on ‘Where geopolitics meets business’ here this evening.

Speaking on strengthening the ability of Indian businesses to effectively compete abroad, Jaishankar said, “We cannot be impervious to the global trend of batting for your business.”

“Whether it is facilitating credit or access, undertaking networking or advocacy, this is increasingly a legitimate expectation that business has of the Government. Building a Team India culture within and beyond the officialdom is very much a part of this thinking.

“That the Foreign Ministry has today specific divisions to focus on lines of credit, training and projects abroad underlines this more strategic view of business.

“While the reordering of the global system reflects opportunities that have been seized, they also come with their own burdens and responsibilities. It is evident that ensuring the security of the global commons and responding to its many challenges will increasingly have to be a shared endeavour.

“By virtue of its location, reflecting ties of kinship and culture, and taking into account its growing commerce, India has a particular obligation in respect to the oceans in the south.

“We are responding vigorously and effectively through a more integrated strategy. Examples include white shipping agreements, coastal surveillance, hydrographic surveys, humanitarian aid and disaster relief ( HADR) operations and naval exercises. Indeed, it is this domain that most expressively demonstrates the alignment that we are discussing.

“Increasingly, our foreign policy is dominated by the quest for capital, resources, technology, capabilities and best practices. They have become the benchmarks to judge the success or otherwise of policies and interactions.

“It is telling that considerable efforts are invested to encourage the involvement of external partners in development programmes like Digital India, Skill India, Smart Cities or Namame Gange.

“When a Prime Minister goes to Hannover to showcase ‘Make in India’ or to San Francisco to unveil ‘Start Up India’, clearly we are entering a different era. It is one where making it easier to do business is a key element of our strategy.

“Today, every Embassy has a designated commercial officer. We are the first port of call not just for Indian business going out, but increasingly for foreign business coming in. There is a Division in the Foreign Ministry tasked to hand-hold foreign investors,” he said.