Advocating easing of entry barriers for global corporations, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today said that India needs to become globally competitive from infrastructure to taxation.
In his convocation address at the Management Development Institute (MDI) here he underlined the need for relaxing norms for entry of multinational corporations to promote growth.
“We have to make the entry point into India easier for large global corporations to grow, for large Indian corporations to become global, we have to ease the process of doing business,” Jaitley said.
He stressed on the “ease of doing business, the stability of policy, the maturity of political decision makers, the maturity of political process in reaching the correct decision rather than creating hurdles. From our infrastructure to taxation, we have to become globally competitive”.
The Minister said that high economic growth was necessary to create jobs and raise resources of the government to eradicate poverty.
“Best response to poverty eradication is high growth rate. Sluggish economy cannot eradicate poverty. They can only distribute poverty,” he said.
The economy is likely to grow at 7.4 per cent in the current financial year and is expected to accelerate to 8-8.5 per cent in the next financial year beginning April 1.
Jaitley, in his budget speech, had announced a host of steps to boost growth and improve the ease of doing business. The NDA government had earlier relaxed foreign investment norms in various sectors including insurance and defence.
Parliament recently passed the Insurance Bill raising the foreign investment limit in the sector from 26 per cent to 49 per cent.
India, Jaitley said, does not need a “sluggish but active economy, a profitable economy where the revenues of the government are so large that it can actually bring up the standard of living of poor.
“The best response to poverty eradication is high growth rate. It enables the state to pull up (the standard of living of) the poor. It enables a state to have sufficient resources to feed the poor.”
Emphasising that the world doesn’t look at obsolete societies, Jaitley said: “They (global companies) look at futuristic society and it is that process which is going to generate more jobs…going to help us in giving jobs to our weaker sections.”
He further said the world must look at India as an ideal centre of investment and as a high return investment point.
The effort, he added, is to create a “different India” which should not be entirely dependent on government.
“It’s an India where everyone must get an opportunity to grow. It’s an India where the world must look at us as an ideal centre of investment, as a high return giving point of investment. We have to break away from the past…where our own entrepreneurs look elsewhere,” the Minister said.
Exhorting the students to aim high, Jaitley said: “Fortunately for us whether it’s businesses, professions, carriers, jobs, surnames are now becoming relatively marginal.
“What family and what background you come from now does not pay. India has entered into an another era and therefore in an era where energies and competence of people have been unleashed. It’s somewhat a cruel era also because levels of competition have become very tough”.
The Minister also stressed that internationally India’s competitors are facing far greater challenges and it’s a historical opportunity.
“And if India as a mature society takes the advantage of this historical opportunity, there will be millions like you entering the job market every where. They in turn will be generating an economy which will fulfil the aspirations of a very large number of people,” he added.