Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh visits the White House today. He’s expected to talk trade with President Obama. But he’ll also be greated by protests from the American business community.
India is just the type of market American businesses want a piece of — a billion people, and a rapidly rising middle class hungry for more goods and services. But India likes to think local. It has proposed limits on foreign investments and foreign manufactured goods.
Linda Dempsey is with the National Association of Manufacturers. The group’s protest campaign posters will meet Singh as he arrives at the DC airport.
“In the last two years we’ve really seen a whole series of actions that really seem geared to propping up a few Indian industries at the expense of everybody else,” she says.
But Arvind Subramanian with the Peterson Institute for International Economics disagrees.
“India is trying to build up its manufacturing base by favoring local producers and suppliers,” he says. “But its nothing on the scale or breadth as some of these people are complaining.”
He says if India really wants its manufacturing industry to succeed, it will have to make it easier for foreign companies to do business there.