In a bid to take a final view on relaxing FDI norms in the pharma sector,Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is likely to soon call a meeting of senior ministers,including finance minister P Chidambaram and commerce and industry minister Anand Sharma.
Differences,mainly between the finance and the commerce and industry ministries,on how much FDI in existing domestic units must be approved by the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB),had led to a delay in relaxation of norms.
The Prime Minister is likely to again meet the concerned ministers regarding finalisation of FDI policy, an official said. The development comes in the wake of the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) finalising guidelines after being asked by an inter-ministerial group headed by additional secretary in DEA Shaktikanta Das.
DIPP has sent the final guidelines to the PMO. However,differences still persists on the issue of involvement of Competition Commission of India (CCI) in scrutinisation of mergers and acquisitions of Indian drug companies, the official said. The issue of FDI in Indian pharma firms started attracting governments attention after some foreign firms acquired companies such as Ranbaxy by Daiichi Sankyo of Japan,Shanta Biotech by Sanofi Aventis of France and Piramal Health Cares health unit by Abbott Laboratories of the US.