India, Canada ink deal on social security, IT

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    New Delhi, (IANS) India and Canada Tuesday inked an agreement on social security besides MoUs on cooperation in information technology and electronics and for joint research and develoopment cooperation in defence science and technology.

    The agreements were inked after talks between visiting Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh here.

    The agreement on social security, inked between India’s Ministry of Overseas Indian Affairs and Canada’s Department of Human Resources and Skills Development, provides for avoidance of double social security contributions by “detached workers” — employees who are subject to the legislation of a country and are sent by their employers to work in another country — from the host country’s legislation.

    It also provides for “portability of contributions” or moving the social security contribution at the time of relocation, and totalling the periods of contribution for determining eligibility to a benefit.

    Canada has a large Indian origin community which, according to 2001 figures, numbers over 850,000.

    Addressing the gathering after talks with Harper, Manmohan Singh said: “The large Indian origin community in Canada and the people-to-people interaction this has fostered, has played a vital role in strengthening our relations. The Social Security Agreement that has been signed today will be of enormous benefit to many expatriate professionals in both countries.”

    An MoU on cooperation in information communication technology and electronics was also inked between India’s Ministry of Communications and Information Technology and Canada’s Department of Industry.

    It aims to provide the necessary framework for cooperation in the Information Communication Technology and Electronics (ICTE) sector between the two countries for establishing a strong and effective business to business partnership and cooperation.

    It also aims to raise awareness among private and public sector stakeholders on ICTE opportunities in Canada and India and establishing an ICTE Working Group to engage in a wide variety of ICTE Sector related issues. India is known worldwide for its ICT expertise.

    The third MoU was between between India’s Defence Research and Development Organisation and Canada’s York University for cooperation in the areas of Joint Research and Development in Defence Science and Technology.

    The MoU aims to establish a framework for cooperation and identify opportunities for collaboration in the areas of joint research and development in defence science and technology through information and personnel exchanges.