Asia

India announces easing of foreign direct investment rules

  • FILE- In this Jan. 26, 2016 file photo, an Indian soldier in charge of multi barrel rocket launchers salutes Indian President as he participates in the Republic Day parade in New Delhi, India.  India has announced radical changes in its foreign direct investment rules to attract overseas investment into its aviation and defense industries. Defense and airlines industries can now be 100 percent foreign owned, after previous rules allowed 74 percent and 49 percent, respectively. (AP Photo/ Bernat Armangue, File)

    FILE- In this Jan. 26, 2016 file photo, an Indian soldier in charge of multi barrel rocket launchers salutes Indian President as he participates in the Republic Day parade in New Delhi, India. India has announced radical changes in its foreign direct investment rules to attract overseas investment into its aviation and defense industries. Defense and airlines industries can now be 100 percent foreign owned, after previous rules allowed 74 percent and 49 percent, respectively. (AP Photo/ Bernat Armangue, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE- In this June 15, 2016 file photo, an aircraft of India’s private airline Jet Airways flies above shanties adjacent to the Chhatrapati Shivaji airport as it prepares to land in Mumbai, India. India has announced radical changes in its foreign direct investment rules to attract overseas investment into its aviation and defense industries.Defense and airlines industries can now be 100 percent foreign owned, after previous rules allowed 74 percent and 49 percent, respectively. (AP Photo/ Rajanish Kakade, File)

    FILE- In this June 15, 2016 file photo, an aircraft of India‚Äôs private airline Jet Airways flies above shanties adjacent to the Chhatrapati Shivaji airport as it prepares to land in Mumbai, India. India has announced radical changes in its foreign direct investment rules to attract overseas investment into its aviation and defense industries.Defense and airlines industries can now be 100 percent foreign owned, after previous rules allowed 74 percent and 49 percent, respectively. (AP Photo/ Rajanish Kakade, File)  (The Associated Press)

India has announced radical changes in its foreign direct investment rules to attract overseas investment into its aviation and defense industries.

Defense and airlines industries can now be 100 percent foreign owned, after previous rules allowed 74 percent and 49 percent, respectively. Investments in pharmaceuticals, food products and single-brand retailing were also liberalized.

The prime minister's office announced the changes Monday, saying the opening up of key sectors of the economy would give an impetus to job creation and infrastructure development.

The changes were meant to liberalize and simplify the foreign direct investment policy to make it easier to do business in India, the prime minister's office said in a statement.

The foreign investment changes follow the announcement of a new aviation policy last week.