India’s recently launched Rs 100-lakh-crore infrastructure master plan, digitisation and the ‘Make in India’ initiative were among the main topics discussed as Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman connected with the world’s leading business officers at the Big Apple here on Saturday.
Sitharaman arrived here late Friday after her visit to Washington DC where she participated in the Annual Meetings of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
She met Mastercard Executive Chairman Ajay Banga and Mastercard CEO Michael Miebach here on Saturday.
“The initiatives and progress towards #financialinclusion and #DigitalTransformation formed part of the discussion,” the Ministry of Finance said in a tweet.
In her meeting with FedEx Corporation President and Chief Operating Officer (COO) Raj Subramaniam, discussions focussed on the recently launched initiative of National Infrastructure Master Plan ‘Gati Shakti’ and India’s third largest start-up ecosystem and the unicorn base (start-up companies reaching a high valuation).
On October 13, Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the Rs 100-lakh crore national master plan for multi-modal connectivity that aims to develop infrastructure to reduce logistic costs and boost the economy.
PM Gati Shakti targets to cut logistic costs, increase cargo handling capacity and reduce the turnaround time, Modi said at a function to launch the plan.
The plan aims to lend more power and speed to projects by connecting all concerned departments onto one platform. Now, the infrastructure schemes of various ministries and state governments will be designed and executed with a common vision.
In Sitharaman’s meeting with Citigroup chief executive officer (CEO) Jane Fraser, discussions focussed on the banking company’s “commitment towards #MakeInIndia and focus on #Digitisation and Partnerships with #Fintechs towards #digitaltransformation,” the Finance Ministry tweeted.
Later, Sitharaman also met IBM Chairman and CEO Arvind Krishna.
“IBM’s interest in India in the areas of hybrid cloud, automation, 5G, cybersecurity, data, and AI (artificial intelligence) formed part of the discussion,” the ministry tweeted.
Sitharaman began her week-long US visit with a trip to Boston, where she met CEOs, addressed a roundtable meeting of investors and executives and addressed students and faculty at the Harvard Kennedy School.