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MOIA calls for more NRI Investments in Indian Economy
Thursday, October 04, 2007

A Diaspora Knowledge Network is an ambitious project undertaken by the Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs, which will allow non-resident Indians and persons of Indian origin (NRIs and PIOs) to work on India based projects without re-locating to India.

This was shared by the Minister for Overseas Indian Affairs, Vyalar Ravi at the Harvard University in Boston against the backdrop of the India@60 extravaganza in New York.

A Global Indian Foundation has also been proposed by the Ministry which would direct the philanthropic initiatives of NRIs towards projects related to health, education and rural development.

The MOIA is eager to increase the interaction between India and its diaspora through the Overseas Citizenship of India scheme, the Overseas Indian Facilitation Centre, the Knowledge Network and the Global Foundation.

The Minister appreciated the fact that NRIs and PIOs comprised a select intellectual elite overseas, sharing an economic output of USD 400 million. However, their success has not been shared enough with the Indian economy, he observed.

NRIs and PIOs could perform a broader role in building up the Indian economy. Lauding the role of NRI remittances which helped tide over the financial crisis in 1991, the Minister said these continue to contribute to the nation’s reserves.

However, diaspora investments can definitely be bettered over their current levels The total foreign direct investment sourced from NRIs is a mere USD 8 billion, comprising just 5% of the total FDI in India.

NRIs choose to make portfolio investments in India for a short duration of 3 years. The Minister called on the overseas Indian community to invest in social and human capital, where India seeks to invest heavily in the coming years.

Overseas Indians can form resource groups and facilitate trade and investments with their adopted country, and share knowledge and skills. The Indian diaspora can contribute significantly to social entrepreneurship, with its knowledge of “best practices, innovations and good governance”, said the minister.

Related Readings

»MOIA Working on NRI University
»MOIA withdraws ECRS; NRIs Welcome Decision

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