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Business difficult in India: Vodafone

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vodafoneThe Indian chief executive of a leading global telecom service provider has said it was difficult for foreign companies to do business in the country due to slow pace of government clearances.

“Yes, it is difficult to do business in India… that’s the general perception I think of foreign companies and that is not just in telecom,” Vodafone India Chief Executive Officer & Managing Director Marten Pieters said while speaking at the Economist India Summit here.

Pieters, however, added that the process for doing business in India can be made easier by just removing a few impediments.

Vodafone, the world’s second largest telecom company, has taxation issues with Indian government.

Slapped with a Rs.20,000 crore retrospective capital gains tax after it acquired the telecom assets of an Indian company in 2007, Vodafone has earlier maintained that it will continue with the ongoing international arbitration to resolve the dispute.

“We note the finance minister’s announcement that existing cases arising from the 2012 retrospective tax law should follow the lawful process in which they are currently being adjudicated,” the company had said in a statement after Finance Minister Arun Jaitley’s maiden budget speech.

“Vodafone will, therefore, continue the process of international arbitration initiated under the India-Netherlands Bilateral Investment Treaty,” the statement added.

Pierters also said the telecom industry in India is in a mess.

“The telecom industry, if you look at it from international perspective, is a mess in India … And it seems to come from this concept which has been developed in the past that the more competition, the better,” he said.