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Biggest challenge is to get Centre, states work together: CII president

December 8, 2022 

Bajaj said even in states where it is the same party ruling as the Centre, one doesn't see the same level of focus, energy and interest

The single biggest challenge on the ground is getting the Centre and states to work together, Sanjiv Bajaj, president of Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), said on Thursday, adding that a common minimum programme can be devised to reduce the pain points for the industry.

“If we chug along, we will go from 6-6.5 per cent to a 7 per cent economy which is not bad. But the opportunity that we have is to get to 10 per cent,” Bajaj, who is also the chairman, MD & CEO of Bajaj Finserv, said at the CII Global Economic Policy Summit.

“I think when you see today, on the ground, the single biggest challenge is to get the Centre and states to work together. Unfortunately, with our political system, we have every quarter, every month going to some election or the other. But we can find a common minimum programme," he added.

Bajaj said even in states where it is the same party ruling as the Centre, one doesn’t see the same level of focus, energy and interest. “You need concerted effort that goes beyond words for our leaders to realise that there is this three percent delta between 7 and 10 per cent growth which we could either lose or if we were to achieve that, it will create a whole new India,” he said.

For the medium term, Bajaj said the government should align its industrial and trade policies so that investors have a longer term view that would help India Inc to understand the access that is opening up through the free trade agreements India is signing.

“Keep expanding the PLI schemes, bring in employment-linked incentive schemes as well for labour-intensive industries like tourism, logistics, etc,” Bajaj said.

Kotak Mahindra Bank Managing Director Uday Kotak said India had the opportunity to move up the ladder and be among the top three in the world from the fifth largest at present. “Its realisation would depend on certain metrics, including economic performance in terms of absolute GDP and absolute per capita income instead of the PPP comparison,” he said.

ITC Chairman & Managing Director Sanjiv Puri said there were serious headwinds on exports and that was going to dampen sentiments. “For companies like ours, which are domestically focused, private capex is continuing. We have already done and some more is in the pipeline," he said.

[The Business Standard]

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