India is strong today, stronger tomorrow: Modi tells Canadian investors
Speaking at the Invest India Conference in Canada, the prime minister highlighted the country’s strengths, including the policy reforms it had undertaken recently.
In the virtual keynote address he delivered at the Invest India Conference in Canada, Prime Minister Narendra set out to assure potential investors about Destination India. Speaking to an audience of investment funds, banks, insurance firms, universities, consultancies and companies across sectors like aviation, electronics and manufacturing, he exalted the trade and investment linkages between the two countries. He pointed out how Canadian pension funds were one of the first investors in India.
He said India has all the qualities that are required in an investment destination – a vibrant democracy, political stability, investment and business-friendly policies and a skilled workforce. He spoke about his government’s pandemic relief for the poor and stimulus packages businesses, adding that this opportunity was utilised to institute deep structural reforms. India is strong today and will be stronger tomorrow, he told the audience.
Crucial reforms were undertaken in the areas of education, agriculture and labour policies. The reduced and consolidated labour laws are employer-friendly and will increase the ease of doing business. The new education policies will enable more foreign universities to come to India. Meanwhile, in agriculture, which he said is seeing record exports despite the lockdown, the state is aiming to increase participation of the private sector while ensuring adequate government safety nets. He called these a win-win situation for entrepreneurs. The country was also working towards decriminalising and deregulating several offences under the companies act.
He pointed out how India had shown resilience in the face of the pandemic by ensuring the uninterrupted functioning of manufacturing and supply chains. This is most evident in the pharmaceutical industry which supplies medicines to more than 150 countries. The country had negligible manufacturing capacity for PPE kits before the pandemic but is now one of the largest PPE producers in the world, he said. He pointed out that India’s Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) regime is very well liberalized and a friendly tax regime has been created for sovereign wealth and pension funds. Reforms are being undertaken to develop a robust Bond market while the government is proactively monetizing assets across sectors like airports, railways, roadways, power, etc. Canada, he said, has a lot experience in large infrastructure investment which it has previously deployed in India to great success.