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Special team in PMO will fast-track Japanese investment: Modi

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modiTokyo : Assuring the same quick reaction and proactive response a Japanese investor accorded when he was chief minister of Gujarat, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Monday announced a special team in his office to fast-track investments from Japan.

“In the coming days you’ll get the same speed and response that you have experienced in Gujarat in the past,” Modi told a luncheon hosted by Nippon Kiedanren — the Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and the Japan-India Business Cooperation Committee.

He, accordingly, announced a dedicated special management team directly under the Prime Minister’s Office and said: “Two nominees selected by Japan will also be part of this decision-making team, which will evaluate the business proposals.”

Modi told the luncheon, which included Who’s Who of the business fraternity of Japan and India, that he had the greatest connect, perhaps, with Japanese businesses, adding the two countries must partner not just for bilateral gains, but for Asia and the world.

He said his association with the Japanese industry had made him recognise the importance of good governance, ease of doing business and simplification of policies and assured them a policy-driven decision environment at the federal level to eliminate delays.

Exhorting Japanese businesses to continue investing in India, the prime minister said the two countries must also show the way of the Buddha to the world, and act as a force for development.

He noted that the 21st century will be Asia’s century, but wondered how it would look like? He said that for meeting the aspirations of people in this century, India and Japan had a big role to play.

Modi, who completes 100 days in office Tuesday, also said he had already initiated moves to introduce the Japanese principles of management in the Prime Miniser’s Office, adding India must follow the Japanese model for skill development.

Stating that 65 percent of India’s population was young, he also sought Japan’s help for skill development in India and said: “In 2020, when the world needs a workforce, we are preparing for it from now itself, so that we can match the global workforce.”

India being a youthful nation, his government, he said, was giving importance to skill development to the millions of youth aspiring to enter the job market — be it in terms of quality and the ability to make zero-defect products, or discipline.

“You can really help us with this.”

Overall, he also highlighted the initiatives taken by his government during the first 100 days in office and said moves to ease foreign direct investment rules were widely appreciated.

Modi also said the Indian economy’s growth of 5.7 percent in the first quarter of 2014-15 had a huge positive sentiment.

Going ahead, he said, the clear electoral mandates received by the governments of the two countries, led by him and his host and Japanese premier Shinzo Abe, had given the much political stability that would also deliver a strong push to bilateral ties.

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