Modi to meet industry leaders today

Tue 08 Sep 2015, 10:15:44

New Delhi: As weak recovery in the US and Europe, and turmoil in Chinese economy shifts the global focus to Asian emerging economies like India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called India Inc on Tuesday to discuss ways to turn the worldwide crisis into an opportunity for India. 

The meeting comes a day after the country’s stock and money markets fell to a new low in the past one and half years. A host of external and domestic factors plaguing India’s economic expansion are expected to be discussed in the meeting to be attended also by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley and senior ministry officials.

In his meeting with industry honchos, Modi is also expected to focus on the G-20 pledge to carry on  with reforms as reliance on low interest rates will not be enough to accelerate the economy. Industry has been crying hoarse for an interest rate cut by the Reserve Bank of India for a long time. Last time, the industry had raised the issue of high cost of capital and poor credit growth with PM.

Turning Chinese crisis into India’s opportunity will be the theme around which the Prime Minister will discuss reforms with industry leaders, according to a source. 

The government and the policy

makers believe that India can reap the benefit of slowing China as it is not an export-driven economy to get affected from cooling growth in China. China’s boom, however, was in manufacturing, which translated into job creation for the country. 

Modi is expected to emphasise on moving the needle fast on ‘Make in India’ which has manufacturing and job creation at its heart. Need for boost to sectors such as rail and road transport, power and coal will also be discussed until the government finds a way out of parliament log jam on the two important legislations – land bill and Goods and Services Tax bill.

While the government is accused by the industry of backtracking on amendments to the land acquisition law, there is no clarity on GST Bill either. Added to that is the opposition by the trade unions for changes in labour laws.

The heads of all three industry chambers including FICCI, CII and Assocham have been invited for the meet. 

Other invitees to the meet include Bharti Airtel chief Sunil Bharti Mittal, Essar Group head Shashi Ruia, Reliance Group Chairman Anil Ambani, Adani Group head Gautam Adani, ICICI Bank CEO Chanda Kochhar and SBI Chairperson Arundhati Bhattacharya.

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