India Inc should come forward, invest and show the world: MoS Thakur

Private investment has remained muted in the last few years as the industry has shied away from the capital formation.
Minister of State for Finance Anurag Singh Thakur on Friday exhorted the industry to come forward and invest as Indian economy remains structurally strong.

Highlighting a series of reforms, including moderation in the corporate tax rate, announced by the government in the last six tears to encourage investment, the minister said that the investment by local companies would instil confidence into foreign companies to put money into India.

"We used to talk about the lower corporate tax rates in certain countries. Last year we brought it down. That was the historic corporate tax rate cut from 30 per cent to only 15 per cent."

"Now it is up to the Indian industry and Indian corporates to show to the world and come and invest. I think the first investment should start at home by Indian industries that will bring more confidence into the foreign companies to invest in India. The Prime Minister addressed all of us yesterday and he invited people to invest in India," Thakur said while addressing members of CII via a webinar.

"Modi government's intent is to transform the economy, out of 'command and control' mode and take it towards the 'plug and play' mode," Thakur said.

There are many possibilities and opportunities in various greenfield, brownfield and sunrise sectors in India, he stated, adding "We are bullish about reviving growth because we believe in India Inc."

Private investment has remained muted in the last few years as the industry has shied away from the capital formation.

Talking about steps taken by the government to promote investment in this difficult time, he said as many as 58 sections of the companies law have been decriminalised while threshold limit of invoking bankruptcy proceedings raised from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 1 crore.

The government has also suspended the insolvency proceedings in this pandemic time, he added.

As far as reforms are concerned, Thakur said foreign direct investment ceiling has been liberalised to 74 per cent for defence production while private sector players have been allowed for commercial mining of coal.

More than 1,400 people have shown interest in the last 15 days for commercial mining of coal, he said, adding that it will help bring down import by 60 per cent in the coal sector only.

Earlier this week, the Cabinet approved an investment close to Rs 1 trillion in the agriculture sector which has huge potential for growth.

"If you look at this, the two decades of reforms were undertaken in the span of two weeks...India means business in a world where the business is no longer as usual," he said.

With regard to the economy, the minister said, "India remains structurally strong, and the reforms undertaken in the last six years have built a strong foundation. For us, reforms are systematic and provide synergy to help Indian industry achieve size and scale. Our reforms are integrated, interconnected and targeted so that India Inc and the Indian economy is future-ready."

On the robustness of the financial sector, he said, the government has infused more than Rs 5 trillion for recapitalisation of public sector banks (PSBs).

The mega consolidation has brought down the number of public sector banks to 12 with most of them now out of the RBI's PCA framework, he said.

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