India-US agree to combat financial crimes

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India-US agree

US Secretary of the Treasury Timothy Geithner today louded the recent reforms advanced by Prime Minister Singh and observed that both India and the US had agreed to combat money laundering, terrorist financing, and other financial crimes.

Talking about the recent reforms such as allowing FDI in retail introduced by the Manmohan Singh government,Geithner said:”It will help provide a foundation for stronger economic growth, an increase in investment, and more widespread gains in income.”

Geithner was addressing the meeting on US-India Economic and Financial Partnership in New Delhi on Tuesday.During his speech,he thanked India’s Finance Minister Chidambaram and his colleagues for organizing it.

While stating that India is very important to the United States,he said that he had come to New Delhi to demonstrate his country’s commitment to building on the progress of the last several years.” We have a very promising and rapidly expanding economic and financial relationship. We have a strong strategic partnership with close cooperation on security issues”,he said.

He said:”We meet at an important time in the global economy, and during a period of significant economic reform in India and the United States. Both of our economies have been affected by Europe’s crisis and by slower growth in Asia and around the world.”

Further he said:”India has achieved remarkable economic success in the last 15 years. The recent reforms advanced by Prime Minister Singh and Minister Chidambaram will help provide a foundation for stronger economic growth, an increase in investment, and more widespread gains in income.”

He also talked about reforms undertaken by the Obama administration back home and said that in the United States,a lot of progress repairing the damage caused by financial crisis was made, and a foundation for stronger future growth was laid.”Of course, we still have a lot of challenges ahead of us in improving job growth and in the area of fiscal reforms”,he said.

Prior to his speech, Geithner met Chidambaram,Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke and Governor Subbarao of the Reserve Bank of India.They reportedly discussed the economic outlook,risk and challenges for the US and the Indian economies in the backdrop of global economy.”We also discussed ways our two economies can lower barriers to trade and investment to facilitate stronger growth and job creation for our citizens”,he said.

“We reviewed progress on financial development and reform. In this context, we discussed ways U.S. investors and businesses can best help contribute to India’s investment and infrastructure needs. And we reviewed the opportunities for further expansion of Indian firms in the United States and U.S. firms in India’,said Geithner adding that both countres had agreed on the importance of improving coordination on bilateral tax matters, including with respect to the US tax treaty and implementation of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) to address offshore tax evasion.

Also,they agreed to strengthen mutual cooperation on issues relating to illicit finance, including efforts to combat money laundering, terrorist financing, and other financial crimes.”And we will continue our close cooperation in the G20 and the international financial institutions, working to strengthen the global economy and the international financial system”,said Geithner.

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