Sweden asked India to consider measures to further ease doing business in the country, especially in the areas of corporate tax and the repatriation of dividends by foreign companies….reports Asian Lite News
These among other issues were discussed at the India-Sweden Joint Economic Commission meeting between the respective delegations led by Indian Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Swedish Minister for EU Affairs and Trade Ann Linde.
Briefing reporters here in New Delhi following the 18th Joint Commission meeting, Linde said among the issues facing Swedish companies in India are simplification of investment procedures as well as changes in corporate tax policy that would incentivise the repatriation of divvidends.
“We discussed issues in corporate tax faced by Swedish companies, qmong other matters, with Minister Sitharaman.
“However, corporate tax matters have only been placed on the table at this point and we agreed that the proposals be discussed throughly by experts so as to arrive at an agreement,” she said, adding that it was “not possible to find a solution to all the challenges in a single day”.
The minister noted that Sweden, with its 170-odd companies operating in India, had an old business relationship with the country dating to the beginning of the 20th century. Some of these firms like telecom major Ericsson and vehicles maker Volvo, have become household names in India.
The minster said Swedish companies have been reinvesting in India, leading to a 20 per cent increase in the number of jobs created in the last 2 years.
“Swedish companies directly employ 185,000 people in India, while creating up to 1.3 million jobs indirectly,” Linde said.
On the occasion, the minister released the latest Business Climate Survey made of Swedish companies in India.
Speaking to reporters later, Swedish heavy vehicles major Scania President Stefan Palskog said: “It is the infrastructure and incentives that the Indian government can show to encourage sutainable solutions that will determine the next phase of Swedish investment in India.”
The India-Sweden bilateral trade volume has been growing and was worth $2.5 billion during 2014-15.
An Indian Commerce Ministry statement later said India and Sweden agreed to set up a mechanism to facilitate mutual investments.
“The two sides agreed to establish mechanisms for Swedish/Indian companies to facilitate their investments and business in India and Sweden,” an official statement here said.
Both sides also identified telecommunications, sustainable urban transport and road safety, traditional medicine and food science and technology as other areas of cooperation.
Both countries are also working to sign an MoU to strengthen cooperation in the field of Intellectual Property, it added.