Business & Economy

India urges France to ease
food, visa restrictions

What is India News Service, Friday, 10 December 2004, 2000 hrs IST

India urged France to reduce non-tariff barriers on food exports from this country and to liberalise the visa scheme for IT professionals. Market access issues were also raised by France, which is seeking a cut in taxes on wines and spirits being imported from that country.

The visa issue was raised by the Union Commerce and Industry Minister, Kamal Nath, during a one-to-one meeting with the visiting French External Trade Minister, Francois Loos. He said IT professionals were facing difficulties in obtaining the travel document. Besides, he suggested that five-year green cards should be issued for IT professionals and personnel rather than giving visas only for short periods. He also sought a bilateral framework for recognising mutual technical qualifications. 

Sheila projects 10% growth, gets Rs 5,100 cr in Delhi's kitty: The Planning Commission has approved Rs 5,100 crore for Delhi's plan outlay for the year 2005-06. This, however, doesn't contain allocations for the power sector, and is expected to spur infrastructure development ahead of the Commonwealth Games in 2010.

Oil prices rise: Oil prices rose for the second day in a row on Thursday. The Kuwait Oil Minister called for the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries to cut output by half a million barrels in the second quarter next year.

CPI wants government to intervene in Reliance battle: The Communist Party of India (CPI) leader, Gurudas Dasgupta, today sought the Government's intervention in the ongoing rivalry in the Reliance Industries Limited as it reflected badly on India.

Left tells Kamal Nath not to pass patents buck: The Left parties offered their suggestions on the Patents Amendment Bill well in time for the Commerce Ministry to whet. They hoped that the changes would be made and the Bill would be introduced in the ongoing session of Parliament.

Lending rate war worries bank leaders: Senior bankers have expressed concern that the on-going lending rate war among banks was impacting their bottom lines severely even as the rising interest rates were eroding their investments in government securities. 

24/7 Customer opens Chennai centre for BPO services: Customer, provider of outsourced contact centre and BPO services to global companies, has opened its facility for BPO services in Chennai. The company will add 1,000 new jobs in Chennai over the next 6-9 months.

Bring down corporate tax to 30%, says FICCI: The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) has pitched for a 30 per cent rate of corporation tax.

TI to set up showrooms for cycles: Amidst the booming motorcycles sales in the country, bicycle business seemed to have lost its sheen and sales have been stagnant in the last couple of years.

Air Sahara offers low fares to Hyderabad: Private domestic carrier Air Sahara has come out with a promotional scheme offering a flat fare of Rs 2,222 on the Hyderabad sector. The scheme called "Superbly Hyderabad" offers one-way tickets for direct flights to and from Hyderabad to any sectors. Tickets can be purchased till December 31 and will be valid between February 3 next year and April 30.

Good growth in beer demand: The demand for beer in the domestic market is likely to increase tremendously in the coming years. "The change in  
liquor drinking habits is likely to come more from youth who is witnessing a change in mindset as a part of the globalisation process" says  
Karan Bilimoria, chief executive, Cobra Beer Ltd.
Top appointments in insurance sector: Along with the appointment of R. N. Bhardwaj as Chairman of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC),  
the Government has announced a number of fresh appointments in the insurance sector. 

IA to launch Guwahati-Bangkok service
: State-owned Indian Airlines (IA) will launch a Guwahati-Bangkok service in the new year, according to  
Minister for Civil Aviation Praful Patel.

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