W. Gordon Binns Jr., the former president of General Motors Investment Management Corp., says recent changes in the way the Indian capital markets are run should encourage more U.S. pension funds to invest there.
Mr. Binns, who visited India earlier this year as part of a group of U.S. executives and money managers sponsored by The Asia Society of New York, said the country's economic liberalization program begun in 1991 is still firmly in place.
"India's legal and institutional structure, entrepreneurial talent, and huge market are major attractions now being enhanced by the opening of the economy," he said.
In particular, the Asia Society study group noted institutional investors should be attracted by changes in India's securities regulations, improvements in procedures for settling securities trades, market-driven interest rates for public and private debt, and a stronger debt market open to institutional investors, and the ability of Indian regulators to avoid stock market closures.
GM's $43 billion pension fund has $100 million invested in Indian securities, primarily through the India Magnum Fund managed by Morgan Stanley Asset Management and the Commonwealth Equity Fund managed by Batterymarch Financial Management.
Mr. Binns retired June 30 from GM. The new head of the GM pension fund is W. Allen Reed.