Union Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw at WEF2024 session: Can India seize its Moment?

Estimated read time 4 min read
Spread the love

“The last decade has seen a significant structural shift in India’s economy. This is basically underpinned by 4 major pillars.

The first important pillar is to improve productivity, to improve efficiency in the economy, major investments have happened in the physical as well as digital infrastructure. If you look at the investments made in infrastructure, from a base of about $30 billion, in this fiscal year, India is investing $120 billion in infrastructure, that has multiple impacts, the impact on productivity is very good, the impact on overall economic activity is a multiplier of 3.6, so you invest $100, the economic activities actually of $360.

The positivity brings in close to 240 industries, the steel industry, cement industry, construction machinery, paint industry, lighting industry, cable industry, practically every major industry in any economy is getting a boost because of the physical infrastructure. On the digital side, in the last 10 years, from something around 600 thousand towers, telecom towers, we have reached something like 2.4 million telecom towers. More than 600,000 kilometres of optical fibre cable has been laid.

A completely digital public infrastructure which does practically every transaction whether it is payment, digital insurance, digital credit, digital document verification, it’s a very good structure which has been put in place. So, major investments in physical and digital infrastructure.

The second big structural thing which has happened is, the entire growth under Prime Minister Narendra Modi Ji, is a growth which is very inclusive. He has always kept the people at the bottom of the pyramid as the focus of his growth story. I’ll give it a few numbers, in the last decade 510 million bank accounts have been opened, that is the number of people who have who have been brought into the formal financial system. If you look at the number of houses constructed, 40 million houses constructed for rural and urban poor. That’s like completely changing the landscape of size of a continent. Look at the number of tap water connections, gas connections, 110 million gas connections given.

So, change the entire cooking habits from wood base to gas base. Multiple number of factors which are basically bringing a transformational change in the people at the bottom of the pyramid.

The 3rd most important pillar is focus on manufacturing. Manufacturing whether it is electronics manufacturing, whether it is defence manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, textiles, practically every sector of the economy, very clearly focused incentives, lots, and lots of interventions which the industry asked for. It’s a government which is listening, it’s a government which responds positively to ideas, open minded government and manufacturing has again given very good impetus in terms of job creation. In 2019, every month formal jobs that were created were of the order of 600 thousand, today it is of the order of 1.5 million formal job opportunities created every month, that’s the positive impact which has come and that helps the entire economy in multiple ways.

The 4th big pillar is huge amount of simplification which has happened, more than 1500 archaic laws on the statute book have been repealed, many of the colonial era laws and procedures have been totally removed, more than 30,000 compliances have been removed, it’s a government which listens with absolute open mind. I will give an example, telecom sector, some friends from the telecom sector sitting here. 10 years ago, the time it would take to get a permit for setting up a telecom tower was an average of 230 days, today, that 230 days average has come down to 7 days because so much simplification has happened and out of that if you look at 85% of the permissions for telecom tower, they are instantaneous, you press the enter button and you get your permit out, except for the towers which are close to defence and aviation establishments and everything else is practically instantaneous.

That’s the level of simplification which is happening. These 4 pillars, investment in infrastructure both physical as well as digital, inclusive growth, focus on manufacturing and immense amount of simplification, that is what has given us this growth and with 95% confidence interval, we can all make an assessment that whole of the next decade, we will be growing, India will be growing at 6 to 8%, mostly on the upper side of this band, with a moderate inflation of 4 to 6% in a very consistent way, so this is what I would like you to take away.”

You May Also Like

More From Author

+ There are no comments

Add yours