Praising the Indian community in Malawi for making “significant contribution” in economic activities, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu Sunday said India is on the move and global organisations like the World Bank and the IMF have also appreciated the country’s economic progress. Naidu reached here earlier in the day on the last leg of his six-day three-nation tour to Africa, which aims at deepening India’s strategic cooperation with Botswana, Zimbabwe and Malawi.
“India is on the move. It is not Naidu which says so but World Bank and IMF also say so,” the Vice President said while addressing the Indian community here. Not only banks but rating agency Moody’s has also given good ratings to India, Naidu said, adding this is a happy news for the country. Citing the success of the introduction of Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime, Naidu said in October the GST collection crossed record Rs one lakh crore.
“That is how transformation is happening…One tax one slab throughout the country, that is the ultimate aim,” he said. India, one of the fastest growing major economies in the world, is on the course to become a 5 trillion economy by 2025, he said, adding that the India story, as it is unfolding today, is a promising one.
Naidu quoted the World Bank’s ‘Doing Business 2019’ report which said that India, which advanced to 77th place in the global ranking, is now the region’s top-ranked economy. “Starting a business was made easier through consolidation of multiple application forms and introduction of a Goods and Services Tax (GST),” the report stated.
Some people were sceptical of Jan Dhan accounts and demonetisation but these moves have achieved their purpose, Naidu said. Praising the Indian community, the Vice President said, “I am happy to note that you have made significant contribution to find a place of leadership, in the economic activities of the country. Some of you have attained positions of excellence, in your respective professions.”
The Indian community enjoys a reputation of being peace-loving community and has been able to assimilate well with the locals, he added. According to the Indian Embassy here, there are about 8,500 Malawians of Indian origin who predominantly originated from Gujarat and are concentrated in major cities like Lilongwe, Blantyre, Limbe, Zomba and Mzuzu.
The number of Indian nationals (NRIs) in the African country at present is about 2,500. Most of them hail from Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Telangana, Kerala, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal. They are primarily engaged in trading, agriculture and agro business, pharmaceutical and hospitality. Earlier, on his arrival at the Lilongwe airport, Naidu was received by Malawi’s Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Minister Dr Emmanuel Fabian, Education Minister Bright Msaka and High Commissioner of India to Malawi Suresh Kumar Menon.