GST will happen soon, Modi tells entrepreneurs in Saudi

Highlighting fast-evolving bilateral priorities, India and Saudi Arabia on Sunday agreed to diversify more bilateral trade and investment into the non-oil sector.

In a bid to boost confidence of Saudi investors in India’s economy, Prime Minister Narendra Modi told a select group of Saudi entrepreneurs in Riyadh during the last day of his visit that India will increase ease of doing business and bring in the long awaited Goods and Services Tax (GST).

“Don’t worry....GST will happen. I cannot give a timeframe, but it will happen. It was our commitment and it will happen,” Mr. Modi said.

He also said that India has a stable tax regime and his government has successfully removed the retrospective taxation policy creating ease of doing business.

“Retrospective tax is a matter of the past. My government will continue to work towards establishment of a predictable long-term taxation regime,” the Prime Minister said, highlighting his commitment to a more congenial business climate in India.

To boost the non-oil sector trade, there was agreement on a Framework for Investment Promotion Cooperation between Invest India and the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA).

The assertion of India and Saudi Arabia on Sunday to boost counter-terrorism cooperation was made after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s wide-ranging talks with Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz and delegationlevel parleys between the two sides following which five agreements were signed including one on cooperation in the exchange of intelligence related to money laundering and terror financing.

A joint statement issued after the talks called on states to cut off any kind of support and financing to terrorists operating and perpetrating terrorism from their territories against other states and bring perpetrators of acts of terrorism to justice.

The strong views by Saudi Arabia, an ally of Pakistan and one of the most influential countries in the Gulf region, is seen as an unprecedented political endorsement of New Delhi’s concerns over terrorism, extremism and radicalisation. That apart, four other bilateral agreements were signed focused on financial intelligence, handicrafts, labour cooperation and technical cooperation between the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) and the Saudi Standards, Meteorology and Quality Organisation.

Apart from the agreements, the bilateral Joint Statement issued at the end of the visit highlighted that both sides are willing to coordinate efforts on countering international terror networks.

While Saudi Arabia briefed India about the grand coalition that it has formed with three dozen predominantly Sunni-majority countries, both sides also agreed to work jointly at the level of the United Nations to deal with terror sponsors.

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Printable version | Nov 21, 2021 1:02:16 AM |

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