Emerging economies are fed up by West lecturing: Premji

Davos: In a strongly worded criticism of the US "restrictive" policies, chairman of India-based Wipro Azim Premji told the gathering of global CEOs that the emerging economies are "more than fed up" of being lectured by the West to open their economies without any reciprocity, reports PTI.

"I think they (emerging economies) are fed up of being needled for opening their economies," Mr Premji said here at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum.

He particularly expressed his disappointment with the US seeking more market for its goods in the developing economies, while putting restrictions on its import of services. The liberalisation of goods and services was being treated differently.

When asked whether the Asian economies are "fed up by the lecturing" by the West, chairman of India's third largest software exporter said: "more than fed up".

"People don't seem to equate, liberalise both products and services. If you are talking about global trade-it is products and services.

You cannot have one standards of opening up economy for emerging countries to products and contrary (for the others) particularly the US, which has put all sorts of restrictions on services. This cannot be one way traffic," Mr Premji said.

The Indian IT industry which gets $50 billion of its revenue from the global outsourcing, mainly from the US is peeved at a string of restrictions by the American authorities for service imports. These include hiking the visa fee for professionals.

On the contrary, India has given deals worth $10 billion to the US which will create jobs for 50,000 Americans.

Services are of key interest to India, as they provide about 55% of its Gross Domestic Product.


HCL Technologies upbeat on European market

Davos: While European debt and sovereign crisis is giving anxious moments to multi-national CEOs, India's HCL Technologies is bullish on the continental Europe, aiming to get one-third of its revenue from the region, reports PTI.

"The Europeans are finding that their costs structures are not competitive...this is first-time that the Europeans are opening to outsourcing," vice-chairman and CEO of the $3-billion firm, Vineet Nayar, told PTI on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum (WEF) annual meeting here.

With the $800 million acquisition of the UK-based Axon two years ago, HCL Technologies, which offers IT solutions across different sectors, gets 28% of its revenue from Europe.

"Our share of revenue from the continent Europe will be only higher...," Mr Nayar (48) said.

He said the European companies want to become cost competitive, particularly in the manufacturing sector, offering opportunities for the Indian IT firms to offer them solutions to improve their bottomline by use of technology.

"We see fear in Europe because of debt and Euro crisis... There is a significant emphasis on cost cut in Europe and therefore they are open to Indian IT companies like never before...," he said.

Sending a strong message to the opponents of the India outsourcing story, Mr Nayar, a regular at WEF meetings, said that HCL Technologies would hire 90% of their European manpower from the locals.

The company has already built a delivery centre at Helsinki and Poland.

For the US markets, the HCL Technologies would focus on telecom and entertainment because these industries face threat of survival and are looking for solutions, he said.

The entire space of life sciences will also remain a priority area, reason being president Barack Obama's focus on healthcare.

The company with a 72,000 headcount gets 55% of its revenue from the United States, 28% from Europe and the balance from Asia, including just about 5% from India.

With the potential of the private sector in infrastructure, the HCL Technologies will focus on offering solutions to the Indian power firms, besides the financial services, Mr Nayar added.


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