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India's central bank blames Green Min for dip in FDI

Blame India's crusading environment minister for a plunge in foreign direct investment, the central bank said in its quarterly review Monday.  According to the Indian Express newspaper, the Reserve Bank of India said Jairam Ramesh's new, aggressive role in revoking environmental clearances for large projects -- Vedanta, Orissa and Lavasa spring to mind -- was a "key factor" in an almost 36% drop in FDI in April-September 2010.

The RBI, in its report, points out that inward FDI during this period stood at only about $12.6 billion as against $19.8 billion inward flow witnessed during the same period last fiscal, the paper said.

Meanwhile, FDI flows to major China, Brazil, Mexico and Thailand rose between 6 and 53 per cent in 2010, while Indonesia recorded about a three-fold rise in FDI inflows.

“Added to this (environment sensitive policies) are the persistent procedural delays, land acquisition issues and availability of quality infrastructure, which remain at the centre of the Government’s policy focus,” the paper quotes the RBI as saying.