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India central bank governor wants more globalisation: newspaper

Thursday, February 19, 2015 - 18:44

[MUMBAI] Reserve Bank of India Governor Raghuram Rajan cautioned "large rich countries" against turning their back on globalisation, while saying he was keen for India to start "setting the agenda" in policy debates with other countries.

Mr Rajan made the comments at an event with students in Mumbai on Wednesday, according to a transcript of the exchange provided by Indian newspaper DNA on its website on Thursday.

"My worry across the world is that the large rich countries are now turning their backs on globalisation. They are turning their backs on free trade. They are turning their backs on flow of capital," Mr Rajan said according to the report on the web site.

"And for a country like ours which is so dependent on importing commodities like oil and coal, we have to keep global trade channels open."

Mr Rajan's comments come amid a rising debate in the US Congress over President Barack Obama's trade agenda, as Democrats seek more hard evidence that proposed free trade deals will boost US incomes.

Mr Rajan also said India needed to take a bigger leadership role in global policy debates, instead of being reactive to debates set by larger countries such as those comprising the G7.

"We haven't been setting the agenda ourselves," Mr Rajan was quoted as saying. "Increasingly, we need the intellectual capital, we need the confidence to put those ideas on the table and say, 'guys react to this' and we are not going to be the only guys reacting, you have to start thinking of our ideas."

REUTERS