Mergers and acquisitions by Indian firms in Europe and the United States are expected to double in three years, a survey said on Friday.

Brussels-based policy and research body European Institute for Asian Studies and the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry said in a joint survey the number of acquisitions by Indian firms in Europe and the U.S. would cross 400 a year from 2010 onwards compared with 210 deals expected in 2007.

Indian companies acquired more than 180 firms in the U.S. and Europe during 2006, compared with 130 companies in 2005.

Easy availability of funding, renewed business confidence and relatively stable economic and political regime would be principal factors, leading to intensifying of M&A activities between India and EU as also India and US, the survey said.

The survey said there is enormous potential for improving trade and investment flows between the EU and India.

The country is now among world's most competitive producer of steel, auto component, pharmaceuticals, chemicals offering low-cost high value products, and the future M&A activities between India and Europe would concentrate around them, it said.

In June, an Ernst & Young survey said cross-border deals by Indian firms will cross $35 billion in 2007, compared to $15 billion in 2006 and $4.3 billion in 2005.

This year, some of the big-ticket deals by Indian firms includes Tata Steel's acquisition of Anglo-Dutch group Corus for $12.2 billion and aluminium firm Hindalco's buy of Canada's Novelis Inc for $5.9 billion.