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India not after NRIs' money: Montek


Updated: January 9, 2011, 4:08 PM IST
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India not after NRIs' money: Montek
Montek Singh Ahluwalia dispels the impression that India was after NRI funds.

New Delhi: Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia on Sunday dispelled the impression that India was after NRI funds saying that more than 95 per cent of investment comes from domestic sources.

"I think we can get rid of the notion that we are connecting with the NRIs (Non-Resident Indians) because we want investment...we are not reaching out to NRIs because we need money," Ahluwalia said at the Pravasi Bhartiya Divas organised by the government in collaboration with industry chamber CII.

"At least 95 per cent of investments in the country is domestic investment," Ahluwalia said adding, "if you feel your money is well spent here, you are welcome... If you think in another country you can do better... as an economist I will tell you that is exactly what you should do."

Sharing the dais with Ahluwalia, Minister for Overseas Indian Affairs Valyar Ravi said, "The NRIs share in the foreign direct investment (FDI) in the country is just 1.3 per cent."

According to the latest government data, the cumulative FDI in the country since 1991 stands at $179.45 billion.

Although, the NRI investment in the country is not huge, but the remittances from workers are significant. India received $46.9 billion as remittances during 2008-09.

Ahluwalia pointed out, "We are reaching out (to NRIs) because we value the long, socio-cultural footprint that we all share.

"So, honestly I would tell you, if you don't feel ready to invest in India, don't be apologetic. It's our job to get investors...Indian or foreigner doesn't matter," he added.

India is planning to double the investment in infrastructure to $1 trillion in the 12th Five Year Plan (2012-17) compared to $500 billion in the current Plan.

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