Prime Minister Narendra Modi calls for greater investments in infrastructure and civil aviation
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has emphasised that ‘Ease of Living’ is as important as ‘Ease of Business’, adding that the pandemic has reminded us of the importance of resilience of the global economy against external shocks, which can be achieved by stronger domestic economic capacities.
Delivering the keynote address at the India Ideas Summit on Wednesday, Modi listed several sectors which offer tremendous opportunities to invest such as infrastructure creation including building roads, highways and ports and turbocharging civil aviation, wherein top private Indian airlines plan to include over a thousand new aircraft over the coming decade.
At the Summit hosted by the US-India Business Council (USIBC) on the theme ‘Building a Better Future’, Modi said there is global optimism towards India because it offers a perfect combination of openness, opportunities and options. He noted that in the last six years, efforts have been undertaken to make our economy more open and reform oriented, adding that reforms have ensured competitiveness, enhanced transparency, expanded digitization, greater innovation and more policy stability.
Citing a recent report, the Prime Minister said that there are more rural internet users than urban internet users. Hailing India as a land of opportunities, he said there are about half a billion active internet users in the country now, while there are over half a billion more people who are being connected. He talked about the historic reforms recently undertaken in the agriculture sector and said that there are opportunities to invest in areas including agriculture inputs and machinery, agriculture supply chain, food processing sector, fisheries and organic produce. Noting that the healthcare sector in India is growing faster than 22% every year and the progress of Indian companies in production of medical-technology, tele-medicine and diagnostics, he said that now is the best time to expand investment in Indian healthcare sector.
The Prime Minister talked about India’s rise in ‘Ease of Doing Business’ rankings of the World Bank. He underlined that each year, India is reaching record highs in FDI, adding that FDI inflows in India in 2019-20 were 74 billion dollars, which is an increase of 20% over the previous year. He highlighted that even during the pandemic, India has attracted foreign investment of more than 20 billion dollars between April and July this year.
Calling USA and India as natural partners, he said this partnership can play an important role in helping the world bounce back faster after the pandemic. Reaching out to the American investors, he said that there has never been a better time to invest in India.