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India’s booming economy has created opportunity for greater flow of trade, capital and technology, the prime minister said on Sunday as he urged the 25 million-strong Diaspora to invest in the country.Manmohan Singh also told a conference that India planned to set up a body to provide investment advice to overseas Indians.

India needs investment worth $1.5 trillion in next five years to improve infrastructure, and raise manufacturing capacity and farm output to sustain eight to 10 per cent growth. About $72 billion has to come from abroad, as the cash-strapped government needs to spend more on social projects like education and health.

The PM also called upon Indian universities to be more open to children of overseas Indians.

He expressed delight at the fact that Singapore, China, Japan, South Korea and other countries are supporting India in its bid to revive the ancient Nalanda University in Bihar as a centre of Buddhist learning.

Coming to investments by overseas Indians in India, he said that a proposal to establish an Indian overseas facilitation centre is being developed.

This is envisaged as a source of investment advisory services for overseas Indian investors.

Calling upon overseas Indians to inspire Indians at home to take a broader view of the world, Singh said, I want every Indian living and working in India to aspire for the global recognition that a Zubin Mehta, a Lakshmi Mittal, an Indra Nooyi, an Amartya Sen, or a Kalpana Chawla gets when they go overseas.

Even as you discover and nurture your roots, I urge you to extend your branches, the prime minister told the august gathering that included a large number of Indians who have made their mark all over the world in various fields.

Singapore Deputy Prime Minister S Jayakumar, who is the chief guest in this year’s PBD, spoke about the need for India’s strategic role in East Asia’s future.

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