It's been more than a year I took over as President ASSOCHAM and I am happy to say that'it was indeed an honour to lead the Chamber, considered as Knowledge architect of Corporate India; it would be completing its 100 years of establishment in India in 2020. While this is an emotional moment for me to write this last message in ASSOCHAM BULLETIN as President- ASSOCHAM, I must say that this journey was truly enriching in terms of meeting many politicians, successful business leaders and opinion leaders of the civil society, and they all agree that only through cooperation between the three main sectors of the society (government, business and civil society) we can create sustainable solutions for any issue related to growth of our nation. This is why ASSOCHAM will be the organisation that unites all sectors of the society to create sustainable impact.
The year 2017 is considered as the year of economic reforms. The year began with repercussions of one of the bold move of demonetization, taken by our Hon'ble Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi, followed by roll out of GST from 1st July, 2017. Moreover, implementation of Insolvency & Bankruptcy Law 2016 & RERA were effectively done during 2017, which has created another challenging scenario for the Indian economy.
In spite of all challenges, our economy is growing stronger towards achieving double digit growth. ASSOCHAM keeps contributing significantly, supporting government in formulation of polices and implementation of important economic decision by being the voice of the industry.
The increasing dominance of India on global market is evident as impressed with India's mature stock market; China is not only investing but also willing to learn from it. There are calls in China to emulate the Indian market standards, Global Times wrote. In the past decade, Indian stock market has outperformed that in the Chinese mainland. Since October 2008, Indian stocks have gained by 394 per cent, while the main index in the Chinese mainland has only risen 70 per cent.
Industrial production in the country expanded at a five-month high in June with all three major sectors - manufacturing, mining and electricity - contributing to the recovery. Growth as measured by the Index of Industrial Production (lIP) stood at 7% in June compared with 3.9% in May, according to data released by the statistics office recently. The data is line with an economic revival narrative, although some experts said more data was needed to confirm a trend. The lIP number benefited from the base effect of 0.3% contraction in June last year.
While the 25 basis points increase in the benchmark lending rates by the RBI in recently announced monetary policy is on the expected lines, the 'neutral' stance taken by the central bank points more towards the risks of another hike in the cost of capital and that is what worries the most India Inc. The RBI has clearly demonstrated that there are upside risks with regard to inflation, emanating from the possible impact of the extra-ordinary increase in the Minimum Support Price, pressure on crude oil prices, trade war, widening trade deficit and the resultant impact on fiscal situation. What needs to be ensured, as the RBI Governor Dr Urjit Patel, stated, is that the private sector should not be crowded out for raising resources from the market.
The ASSOCHAM which has occupied a leadership position as an apex chamber, among the Indian industry, trade and business since its inception, almost a century ago, has gone much beyond the prism of the economy and trade. Our founders always had nation-building as top of their agenda and we continue to stand by that great mission even today. It was with this mind set and endeavor of celebrating the Leaders of the Country, that we decided to initiate the Dr A P J Abdul Kalam Memorial Lecture Series. I am sure, right from the word go and in the years to come, the Lecture series would instil inspiration into the lives of our people for a leadership role in their own endeavors of life.
Above all, I would like to convey my sincere thanks to the ministers, bureaucrats, my fellow members & colleagues at ASSOCHAM for their whole hearted support to make my tenure a fruitful one.