Inviting Saudi businesses to come and invest in India in sectors like railways, defence and energy, Modi also said a common indirect taxation regime in form of GST (Goods and Services Tax) was “about to happen”. He, however, refrained from giving any specific timeframe.
“You are worried about GST. Do not worry about GST. GST will happen. I cannot give a timeframe, but it will happen. It was our commitment, and it is about to happen,” Modi said.
Prime Minister added the government is in favour of long-term stable and predictable policies and any retrospective amendment to tax laws is a thing of past.
” If someone plans to come to India after 10 years, he should be able to predict the tax structure. I am in favour of a long-term predictable tax system,” he said.
In the last leg of his three nation tour, PM who is presently in Riyadh said in Riyadh that retrospective taxation has been relegated to history, but he is “not able to do anything” on two pending cases from the previous government as “they are sub-judice”.
Addressing Saudi CEOs and Indian business leaders here, Modi said his government has opened up various sectors to foreign investment and India stands out as a “beacon of hope” amidst global economic slowdown.
“World Bank has upgraded India by 12 ranks in Ease of Doing Business. I expect in the next review, our ranking will improve further because we have made a lot of administrative reforms.
Inviting investments in petroleum sector, Modi said investors can partner India in energy sector as the country offers “transparent” policies.
He said in one year, India has already achieved 5,500 MW of renewable energy production.
“When I first time said 175 GW renewable energy people were surprised…. And I am confident that we will do it within the time period. I want investment in solar equipment manufacturing and we are ready to produce 175 GW renewable energy,” the PM said.
Earlier today, the Prime Minister visited Tata Consultancy Services and interacted with Saudi women IT professionals at the first-of- its-kind all-women TCS training centre in the heart of the city here and invited them to come to India.
“For the world it is considered to be a main headline news that in Riyadh today I am meeting those IT professionals who I can say today represent the glory of Saudi Arabia,” said Modi
Modi spent around 40 minutes at the centre and even posed for selfies at the TCS Centre, where 1,000 women work in BPO operations, 85 per cent of whom are Saudi nationals.
“All of you must come to India, I assure you a very warm reception. The atmosphere I am witnessing here today has the potential to give a strong message to the world,” Modi said.
Later in the day, Prime Minister is expected to hold extensive talks with King Salman on a range of bilateral issues tomorrow following which both sides will sign a number of MoUs.
Separately, he will also meet Crown Prince and Deputy Prime Minister Mohammed bin Naif and Deputy Crown Prince and Defence Minister Mohammed bin Salman.
The Prime Minister arrived here from Washington on the final leg of his three-nation tour that began on March 30 with a visit to Brussels.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived here today on a two-day visit to energy-powerhouse Saudi Arabia during which both countries are set to sign a raft of pacts to bolster their strategic partnership besides exploring ways to deepen security and counter-terror cooperation.
He was given a warm welcome at the ‘Royal Terminal’ of the Khalid International Airport with Governor of Riyadh Prince Faisal bin Bandar bin Abdulaziz, a key member of the Royal family, receiving him along with a number of high- ranking Saudi officials.