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The Union Government is determined to announce a National Policy on Corporate Governance� within six months from now. �The policy�s accent will be on leveraging technology for affirmative action,� said Dr. Veerappa Moily, Union Minister for Corporate Affairs, addressing a full-day conference on �India Corporate and Investor Meet� , organized by Indian Merchants� Chamber at Y B Chavan auditorium in Mumbai on February 22.

The IMC President Ms. Bhavna Doshi, who welcomed the minister and other participants, said that proper enforcement of laws and education of investors was crucial to ensure development of India�s vibrant and inclusive capital market.

She said that protection of investors and companies and implementation of legal provisions on security, bankruptcy, takeover, competition laws, stock exchange regulations and accounting standards had assumed great importance with globalizations of the Indian economy.

Besides Dr. Moily, others who addressed the conference included Mr. Avinash Srivastava, Joint Secretary in the Union Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Mr. Niranjan Hiranandani, IMC�s Vice President, Mr Piyush Goyal, MP, Rajya Sabha & Director, Intercon Advisors Pvt. Ltd., Mrs. Deena Mehta, Managing Director, Asit C Mehta Investment Intermediaries Ltd., Mrs Sucheta Dalal, Founder � Trustee, Moneylife Foundation, Mr. Madhusudan Kela, Chief Investment Strategist, Reliance Capital Asset Management Limited, Mr. Mahesh Krishnamurthy, Managing Director of Resources Global Professionals India Pvt. Ltd., Mr Senjam Raj Sekhar, Director, Communications & Brand, Vedanta Group, Mr Ahmar Sultan, Associate Vice President, CSR, Hindustan Zinc and Ms Sheetal Mehta, Chief-CSR, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd & Executive Director, Mahindra Foundations.

Continuing the inaugural address, Dr. Veerappa Moily said that this conference was the final round of a series of conferences held earlier in Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai and Bangalore. �The recommendations made in these consultative conferences would set an agenda for my Ministry. It would help draw a roadmap for realizing our national aspirations, investment and for formulating norms of corporate governance� he said.

Dr. Moily said that implementation of the E-Governance by his ministry had yielded astounding results. �We are now able to register a company within 24 hours, and automate many procedures. We will do all that is needed to reform the corporate sector. I will also take up problems of the corporates with other ministries, whenever needed,� he said.

The Minister referred to his initiative regarding introduction of the National Judicial Mission. �Our objective is to settle the court cases within a maximum period between six months and one year.�

He told the corporate leaders that corporate growth did not mean merely increasing turnover and making short-term profits; it also meant discharging corporate social responsibility in a sustained manner.

Dr. Moily said the public sector undertakings (PSUs) had decided to set aside two percent of their profits for spending on their CSR obligations towards inclusive growth. �We expect all the corporates to in the private sector also to emulate their examples. Corporate performance does not mean making short-term profits, but achieving long-term, sustained growth based on ethical standards. We believe in self-regulations in this respect by the corporates,� he said.

He said that corporates should play a major role in spreading the corporate culture to rural areas and small towns. �Today 90% of liquidity in our capital markets come from only 10 cities of India. We need to take the equity investment culture to rural areas. Of the 40% domestic savings now, only 5% goes to our stock markets. Therefore companies must build confidence among the rural population,� he said.

Mr. Avinash Srivastava said that the Government envisioned corporate growth as implementation of enlightened regulations for avoiding frauds. �The large corporate houses in the country had acquired a major share in the national economy, consequent to many reform measures initiated by the government. They have also been enabled to set up bases overseas,� he said.

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