Source: The Hitavada      Date: 11 Jul 2017 12:02:35

The HUGE endorsement by world leaders of the economic reforms that the Indian Government has undertaken under the stewardship of Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi when during the two-day summit meeting of G20 grouping, in Hamburg on Saturday, has put a stamp of approval on steps taken for sustainable and inclusive growth as well as for supporting global development. It is indeed a tribute to the leadership of Mr. Modi and his vision for a prosperous India from the world’s 20 largest economies. The summit was unanimous in its praise of India for promoting ease of doing business. 

Thus it should be a matter of pride for Indians that world leaders are looking to India as a country with a huge economic potential and that they are watchful of the developments taking place in the country and are carefully observing policy changes being made by the Government of interest to their investing companies in doing business with Indian investors. They see a very favourable investment atmosphere building up in India.

Such an endorsement by world leaders, belonging mostly to rich countries, will send very positive signals to investors all over the world. Already many multi-national companies are evincing interest in Indian projects, especially in the infrastructure sector which has vast potential for investment in the country. This sector has been opened up for FDI and also joint ventures by the Indian Government with necessary policy changes to suit the needs of investors.

Of course the present Government is wading through a maze of policies that created stumbling blocks more than facilitated doing business. Decades of policy paralysis and lack of decision-making, bureaucratic stonewalling and roadblocks had resulted in stagnation of economic growth, there being no incentive for the investors to take investment decisions. That it took years and years to get clearances for projects, leading to ultimately dumping them, is a sad story of governance in the past.

The present Government had the onerous task of dismantling those cobwebs of indecision and policy paralysis, the term used to describe Indian situation by the world. This was no easy task for the new Government, though it had pledged its commitment to undo all those negatives of the past regimes and revive the interest of global investors and foreign Governments in the resilience of Indian economy.

Three years is too short a period to undo decades of decadence in the policy framework and seemingly impregnable bureaucratic walls. But the fact that world leaders and global investors have begun to take notice of the business-friendly changes is indeed a tribute to the present Government’s pursuit of its commitment to the cause it had promised to fulfill.

While the Government has reason to be proud of this change of perception among world leaders, it is also aware that it cannot rest on its laurels as yet as the process of change has just began and much catching up with the rest of the developed world has to be done. The fact that India still is not among the 50 strongest countries promising ease of doing business and is ranked a poor 130th in the world should be cause enough for the Government and policy-makers to be on their toes to look for areas that require urgent attention. This is essential not only for changing perception of world watchers but also for improving the lives of countrymen to achieve real inclusive growth. Nevertheless, the Hamburg endorsement should add pep to the Government’s efforts to bring about changes that are urgently required for carrying forward India’s economic growth story.