* Invitation to President Anastasiades in the pipeline *
By Angela Komodromou
The newly elected pro-business administration of Narendra Modi is placing particular emphasis on the improvement of ties with other countries, such as Cyprus, which is why the Foreign Ministry in New Delhi is considering an invitation for President Nicos Anastasiades to visit the Indian capital.
The Hindu nationalist BJP-led government, just three months into its historical term of office, plans to upgrade the country’s political, as well as business model, explained the Minister of State for External Affairs, Vijay Kumar Singh.
As the Minister said, “we enjoy excellent relations.”
Speaking to a mission of journalists from ten island nations visiting India, Kumar said that both the government, as well as the Foreign Ministry are looking for ways to improve relations with other countries and take them to a new level.
He said the priority is also to restructure the economy.
Referring to India’s economic problems, Minister Kumar said that the country faces “the same problems as with any other developed country with a large population.
“The new government’s goal is a major restructuring of the economy.”
As regards the business climate, he said that India is “doing it’s best” and that the emphasis is how to project the new business model overseas, as well as to attract foreign investors.
The response so far has been that more and more are expressing the view that they “feel happy doing business with India”.
He added that the Indian business model is friendlier than many other countries and that any one who wants to enjoy the benefits is more than welcome, in order to break away from stereotypical economic environments.
The Foreign Minister said that infrastructural changes were improving to the better, but not with the speed that would be expected. Nevertheless, they are improving.
The government official joked to say that economic developments were similar to tackling the traffic congestion in New Delhi. “You must have patience”.
In any case, Foreign Ministry officials suggested that the government is seriously inviting President Anastasiades for a state visit.
As regards the pending issue of the India-Cyprus double taxation avoidance agreement, government officials in New Deli consider that the matter will be resolved very soon and the only outstanding matters are of procedural nature.
A senior Finance Ministry official told the Financial Mirror: “We do not consider that we have placed friends on a black list. It’s just that because of the prolonged negotiations, matters may take some time to conclude, and this is the way it is.”
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