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Covid, Its Aftermath Has Shown Indian Economy’s Resilience: Nirmala Sitharaman

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday participated in the Global Investors Roundtable organized by the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF) through video conferencing which witnessed participation from some of the largest foreign investors, including Mastercard, MetLife, Prudential, Air Products, Dell, SoftBank and Warburg Pincus amongst others.

As per the official release by the ministry, the event provided investors with an opportunity to engage with the Union Finance Minister and senior officials of the government to discuss potential investment opportunities and deliberate on the role of ongoing policy reforms that will enable greater Ease-of-Doing-Business in India.

Ms Sitharaman discussed India’s opportunities for growth and investment pertaining to India’s wide-ranging reforms which continues to position the country as an attractive destination for foreign investors. The Finance Minister remarked that macro-economic stability, infrastructure-led economic growth opportunities, financial sector reforms and positioning as a strong player in global supply chains are just some of the ways India continues to rise as a global economic powerhouse.

The broad messages conveyed to the investors were: Significant drop in new Covid infections in the country and decline of second wave; Strong Relief and Reforms undertaken by government during the pandemic times; Continued macro-economic stability and resilience in economic recovery in the recent months.

Vision to make India Self-Reliant (Aatma Nirbhar Bharat); Steps taken for Infrastructure led economic growth; Creating multi-sectoral opportunities for investors; Strong track record of reform implementation in the last 6 years; Other strengths/advantages of India as an investment destination and Opportunities for investment in Climate, ESG and Sustainability focused investments were other broad messages conveyed in the meeting.

In her concluding remarks, Ms Sitharaman spoke about going ahead with an overall vision to build a self-reliant modern India driven by 5 “I’s” viz. Intent, Inclusion, Investment, Infrastructure and Innovation. The Finance Minister stated that the country is committed for a long-term relationship with US investors and proposes to meet twice yearly.

Issues discussed upon in the meeting are the continuous reforms make India a great place to do business; COVID and its aftermath has shown the Indian economy’s resilience; Highest ever GST collections shows the bright spot-More formalisation of the economy and tax compliance.

Innovation and Research and Development got great potential; New opportunities emerging for foreign investors with recent FDI reforms privatisation policy and Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme; Fiscal situation is under control and expect to improve further; 15 new unicorns in the first 5 years of 2021 itself reflecting growing startup ecosystem to be amongst the best in the world were also discussed upon.

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Anirudha Yerunkar

Global Business Line Team
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