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Updated: January 30, 2012 02:31 IST

Pranab pitches for foreign investment in infrastructure

PTI
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Finance Minister Pranab Mukharjee. File photo
The Hindu Finance Minister Pranab Mukharjee. File photo

Pitching for foreign investment in the infrastructure sector, which needs $1 trillion in the 12th Five Year Plan, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Sunday asked U.S. investors to access the Indian debt market through a mechanism of regulated entities with a sustained long-term interest rate.

Meeting leaders of Fortune 500 companies here, Mr. Mukherjee assured them that India had evolved a transparent and stable regulatory regime in sectors such as electricity, telecommunications, ports, airports, petroleum and natural gas, and that a regulator for the coal sector was on the anvil.

Mr. Mukherjee told them that India had recently liberalised foreign participation in the debt-equity market by allowing foreign investors to invest in the Indian equity directly.

Seeking a “greater degree of involvement” from foreign investors, Mr. Mukherjee said the “debt requirement for the infrastructure sector is very large.” He said India had recently evolved a mechanism to enable access to the Indian debt market through infrastructure debt funds, which would be regulated entities with a sustained long-term interest rate, long-horizon entities such as pension and infrastructure and insurance funds.

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