India, on Thursday, invited Belgium to invest in the upcoming national manufacturing and investments zones (NMIZs) with a focused approach in energy, water disposal as well as treatment, and research and training.

This was conveyed to the visiting Belgian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and European Affairs, Didier Reynders, by Commerce and Industry Minister, Anand Sharma, during his meeting here. An official statement issued after the meeting said the visiting Belgian Minister offered expertise in water treatment, waste disposal and energy sector which would be useful in NMIZs.

NMIZs will be mega industrial zones with world-class supporting infrastructure.

The government is offering incentives such as exemption from capital gains tax and a liberalised labour and environment norms to promote these zones. Mr. Sharma invited participation of Belgian companies, especially in the fields of training and research.

Outsourcing

He also suggested that owing to India’s strength in the pharmaceutical sector, Belgium could consider outsourcing some of the research and development work to the laboratories in India.

Mr. Sharma also called for institutional linkages between the Antwerp World Diamond Centre (AWDC) and the diamond facilities in India, specifically in grading and sorting, R&D, certification, cutting and polishing.

Trade between the countries is dominated by the gems and jewellery sector which accounts for about 69.84 per cent of the bilateral trade. In 2011, bilateral trade stood at $17.75 billion.