European resistance may affect EU investments in India

European resistance may affect EU investments in India
Published: 17 February 2006

India is crying foul on the politicisation of steel magnate LN Mittal’s bid for Arcelor. Industry bodies are arguing that it would set a wrong precedent and there might be repercussions with a similar block on investments from the European Union in India in the future.  The resistance from European nations on LN Mittal’s bid for French steel giant Arcelor is being seen as a political interference in what is a business issue. Commentators have pointed out that French companies like Lafarge have acquired companies in India without facing any blocks from the government even though cement has been something core to Indian business.  Likewise Holcim’s recent acquisition of ACC and Gujarat Ambuja - two of the biggest Indian cement companies -without any political blocks points out that the Indian government has restrained from interfering in commercial matters.
 
Assocham president, Anil Agarwal, said, "All along it is the developed countries which have been pressing hard for the ’national treatment’ under the WTO dispensation. Suddenly we find them changing track when a new global architecture is emerging." On his part N Srinivasan, director general of CII, said: "We have not taken a position yet on the issue. We will be having internal discussions in the next few days."