I will personally act as a bridge if there are any gaps: PM Modi

Just a few days back, we have decided to drastically reduce the corporate tax. This is a very revolutionary step from the level of investment and after this decision, all the people from the business world whom I met or had a discussion with, are considering it very historical. During this time, several decisions have been announced one after another by the government to increase investment. We have also abolished more than 50 such old laws which were hindering the development work. Let me remind you again, it has not been more than three-four months of our new government. Today, I want to say from this platform, that this is just the beginning. 

Today, India is in a unique position where our rapid growth enables us to cater to diverse demand. Our people are rapidly defeating poverty, moving up the economic ladder and diversifying their consumption. Thus, if you want to invest in a market where there is scale, come to India. Our middles class is a huge segment of people who are aspirational and has a global outlook. Thus, if you want to invest in a market where the latest trends and features are appreciated, come to India. Our youth are one of the largest users of the app economy. From food to transport and from movies to hyperlocal delivery, start-ups are acing everything. Thus if you want to invest in start-ups with a huge market, come to India. Our infrastructure creation is expanding at an unprecedented pace. From highways to metros, from railways to ports, from airports to logistics, each sector is seeing massive investment and tremendous potential. Thus, if you want to invest in one of the largest infrastructure ecosystem, come to India. We are rapidly modernizing our cities, and equipping them with latest technology and citizen friendly infrastructure. Thus if you want to invest in urbanization, come to India. We have opened our defense sector like never before. If you want to make in India, for India and for the world, come to India.

Today, our government is investing on the development of infrastructure in India like never before. In the coming years we are now going to spend Rs 100 lakh crore (about $ 1.3 trillion) on modern infrastructure. Apart from this, lakhs of crores of rupees are also being spent on India's social infrastructure. The roadmap for qualitative and quantitative leap in India's Growth Story has hit the ground. Now India has set a big goal - to make the country a $ 5 trillion economy. 

When we came into government in 2014, the country's economy was at around $ 2 trillion. In the last five years, we added about one trillion dollars to it. And now we are working hard to achieve the goal of $ 5 trillion.

To achieve this huge target, we also have the capability and the courage and conditions are also in our favour. Today there are four important factors of India's growth story which are difficult to find in the world together. These 4 factors are Democracy, Demography, Demand and Decisiveness. If I talk about the first factor, then this kind of opportunity and political stability in India has come after many decades. When there is Democracy, Political Stability, Predictable Policy, and Independent Judiciary then confidence of Safety, Security and Growth of investment is automatically found there.

This growth is bolstered by India's Demographic Dividend and the Young and Energetic Talent Pool of India. Today India is one of the countries with the largest Engineering Education base and the strongest R&D facilities in the world. Due to the encouragement that the youth of India are getting regarding innovation, India is ranked number 3 in terms of Unicorns after America and China.

The third is the factor of Demand. As India's large population is becoming economically empowered, Purchasing power is increasing, so is the demand too. For example, the growth of air passenger traffic has been in double digit for the past few years. Because of that today India has become the third largest aviation market in the world.

Along with Democracy, Demography and Demand, what makes India special today is Decisiveness. Despite being a diverse and federal democracy, in the last 5 years the emphasis has been laid on preparing seamless, inclusive and transparent arrangements for the whole of India. 

Where previously there was a web of taxes in India, now a single Indirect Tax Regime in the form of GST has become part of the business culture of the entire country.

We have also worked hard to strengthen the IPR and trade mark regime. Similarly, the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code was created to deal with the insolvency and bankruptcy. We will continue to make necessary reforms to bring laws related to tax and tax on equity investments on a par with the global tax regime. Apart from tax reform, the world's largest financial inclusion has happened in India in a very short time. About 370 million people have been linked to banking system for the first time in the last 4-5 years. Today, almost every citizen of India has a unique ID, mobile phone and a bank account. Due to which targeted service delivery increased, leakages have stopped and transparency has increased manifold.

In this New India, we have started the campaign for de-regulation, de-licensing and de-bottlenecking. Due to such reforms, India has been consistently doing better in every Global Ranking. A jump of 10 points in the Logistics Performance Index, a jump of 13 points in the Global Competitiveness Index, a 24-point improvement in the Global Innovation Index and, most importantly, a 65-rank improvement in the World Bank's Ease of Doing Business Index, are phenomenal. 

Your desires and our dreams match perfectly; your technology and our talent can change the world; your scale and our skills can speed up global economic growth; Your rational ways and our human values can show the path which the world is looking for. And if there is any gap anywhere - I will personally act as a bridge.

at the Bloomberg Global Business Forum in New York, September 25

Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel