India very keen to get Korean semiconductor factories: Envoy
India is very keen to get Korean semiconductor factories start operations from the country, according to Republic of Korea's Ambassador to India, Mr. Joon-gyu Lee.
Speaking at a seminar on "Expanding India-ROK Partnership: Prospects and Challenges" at Observer Research Foundation, Joon-gyu Lee, said the Indian Government wants to get companies like Samsung and LG which manufacture semiconductors to start this operation from here too.
"The companies are considering Indian request. The problem is Indian style of slow processes," he said.
The ambassador said semiconductor factories need stable power, stable water and basic components and the companies think that the environment in India is not yet ready.
He said when Samsung started its semiconductor business operations from Xiang in China too, there were problems. But the central and local government did their best to see that the problems are solved, he said.
With finally Posco started moving after 9-year delays, "I am telling the Korean companies that this is the right time to come to India. No Korean company can ignore the Indian market," the Ambassador said.
Noting that a meaningful strategic relation can only flourish on the strength of robust economic relations, the ambassador stressed the need for upgrading the CEPA (Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement) and creating the right environment for bringing in manufacturing sector to India.
He admitted that trade imbalance is a worry but said it can be reduced only by Korean companies starting manufacturing sector in India. This will happen only when licence processes become faster and business friendly, he said.
The ambassador said there is great potential for cooperation in different fields, including civil nuclear components, defence cooperation, especially shipbuilding, etc. However, the first projects have to move first.
He pointed out that a minesweeping agreement was signed with Korean company Kangnam Corp last year but still it is to go beyond processes. "I don't know what are the problems. But it is yet to move. Very very slow. Areas like shipbuilding can be taken up after this only", he said.
He also hoped that with the coming up of Korea's ambitious Rajasthan Industrial Park, things would start looking brighter and more and more Korean companies will move over here.
To a question, he said right now it is not clear how many companies would participate in the industrial park.
The ambassador also made it clear that Korea is not against India becoming a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council.
He said what Korea is not supporting is the UNSC reforms as such. He pointed out that already there are five permanent members in the UNSC and differences within them do create problems. More members therefore would result in more problems, the Ambassador said, adding that is why Korea is against the expansion of the UNSC.
(Posted on 14-02-2014)
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