In the present pandemic times when the headwinds to growth have exacerbated, the reform momentum has continued, and will continue in the future as well, said Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs, Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman while addressing the National MNCs Conference 2020 organised by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in New Delhi on Monday.
Several measures were being taken up to keep the reforms impetus intact such as professionalisation of the financial sector and thrust on disinvestments.
“All enterprises, MNCs and India Inc., big, medium and small enterprises, are facing a reset exercise in doing business. We will have to make sure that policies are right to make India an attractive investment destination,” the finance minister underlined.
The reforms announced by the government under the ambit of the three Aatmanirbhar Bharat packages had opened up many sectors including niche sectors such as nuclear energy and space for the foreign investors to partake in. Moreover, it needed to be kept in mind that the underlying tenet of the marquee package was not about excluding India from the globe but making it an integral part of the global value chains by improving its domestic competitiveness, emphasised the finance minister.
The Central Government had been working assiduously towards ensuring a conducive environment for the MNCs operating out of India, she stated.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had himself has been interacting with MNCs regarding their concerns. Enthused by the government’s thrust on reforms and reduced taxation rates, several sovereign wealth funds had expressed interest in partnering with the country on its National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP), Sitharaman stated.
In furtherance of the reforms agenda, the government was ensuring the setting up of dedicated special manufacturing zones for the production of pharmaceuticals, medical devices and active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) in six states. An effective unified single-window mechanism would be a part of these zones, she declared.
The finance minister concluded that the prime minister had not lost the opportunity for deep reforms, even during the coronavirus crisis and the same would continue.
Soumitra Bhattacharya, Chairman, CII National Committee on MNCs, in his opening remarks stated that MNCs acknowledge the fast-paced reforms that have become a regular feature of the current economic environment. The reforms must continue given the tectonic shifts in global supply chains in a post-COVID world, which had attracted many foreign firms to shift their base to India. This opportunity must be seized fully, he added.
Earlier, Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, CII, in his welcome address highlighted that the government had been working rigorously to create a strong, vigorous, and dynamic environment for MNCs by introducing a plethora of reforms. He suggested that slab-based incentives could be offered, depending on the size of the foreign direct investment (FDI).