Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Wednesday launched ‘Make in India’ conference in Sydney and asked Australian businesses to be the part of India’s growth story.
India becomes the key focus of the world today and ‘Make in India’ is one of the key focuses of the government, Mr. Jaitley, who is in Sydney for two days, said.
“India could manage to become a very low cost service provider but failed to transform into a low cost manufacturing,” Mr. Jaitley said, adding that now there was an opportunity to do so.
“Indian government does feel that manufacturing sector does need to grow,” he said.
The Minister pinpointed that with People in agri sector moving out, there was a need to achieve the target of manufacturing sector to occupy the 25 per cent of India’s GDP.
Mr. Jaitley said that now is the time when ‘Make in India’ campaign can translate into actual activities.
He said despite global economic downturn, India had shown a great resilience.
“For two consecutive years, we are the fastest growing economy in the world. When we measure ourselves by our own standards, we believe that 7.5 per cent does not reflect our true potential,” Mr. Jaitley said.
India has to invest in its infrastructure in a bid to prepare a base for an economy of this huge size, he said.
“Manufacturing must occupy a space,” he said, adding that global investors must look at India.
The conference was launched in the presence of Australia’s Special Envoy for trade Andrew Robb, Indian High Commissioner Navdeep Suri, CII Director-General Chandrajit Banerjee, CII President Sumit Mazumder and NEW Parliament Secretary for Major Events and Tourism Jonathan O’Dea.
Earlier on Wednesday, Mr. Jaitley called on Australian Foreign Minister Julie bishop.
Ms. Bishop described the meeting as “productive” and positive that comprised several bilateral issues between the two sides.
Mr. Jaitley indicated that India has been given a second chance to transform itself into manufacturing hub with ‘Make in India’ campaign launch.
Indian economy was doing well despite global downturns and if the global tailwinds become more supportive, India could perform even better, he said.
“Global investors must seriously look at in terms of investing in India,” Mr. Jaitley said, adding that India has also shown a great appetite for economic reforms.
“The constituency that supports economic reforms in India today are far more bigger than the one which obstructs it. India becoming an aspirational society has significantly increased,” he said.
Mr. Jaitley also cited the size of the market that India offered.
“Any market that occupies 1/6 of the global population, 35-40 per cent of them in middle class. Its purchasing power increasing by the day. Where else will you get a market of this size,” he said, adding that Indian federalism has evolved from being cooperative to competitive.
The Minister further assured the investors that tax system in India was also being gradually brought to global standards.
Speaking on the occasion, Australia’s former trade minister Andrew Robb said Australia had lots to offer to India in terms of expertise.
“As a country, we are 80 per cent services. We can offer environment, power, design, energy, transport and other services,” Mr. Robb said.
Indian High Commissioner Navdeep Suri said the two sides had a strong strategic relationship.