Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today emphasised the need to continue the momentum on infrastructure creation and expedite investment in railways to propel the Indian economy. Addressing industry association FICCI’s annual general meeting here, he said India has had one of the highest infrastructure spendings in the world but the momentum needs to be sustained. There is a need to “hurry up” on investment in railway infrastructure, including on stations and super fast and bullet trains, he said. Explaining the rationale for massive capital infusion plan in public sector banks, Jaitley said that lending capacity of banks was constrained due to capital inadequacy. Improving lending capacity of banks will be government’s priority for the next year, he said.
India, he said, has realised the importance of structural changes despite global slowdown. The country saw more structural changes in 2017 than the recent past. Jaitley said next year’s agenda for the government is funding banks and completing unfinished tasks of strengthening state-owned banks. The government has appointed advisors for sale of Air India and will soon come out with the next step, he said without elaborating. He exuded confidence of exceeding the disinvestment target this fiscal, the first time ever.