We will get our growth back, PM tells In­dia Inc

Hindustan Times (Jalandhar) - - NEWS - Ra­jeev Jayaswal let­ters@hin­dus­tan­times.com

› There are many rea­sons for con­fi­dence. I have con­fi­dence in In­dia’s ca­pa­bil­i­ties and crisis man­age­ment; in In­dia’s tal­ent and tech­nol­ogy; in In­dia’s in­no­va­tion and in­tel­lect; in In­dia’s farm­ers, MSMEs and en­trepreneur­s

NAREN­DRA MODI, Prime Minister

NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Naren­dra Modi on Tues­day voiced con­fi­dence in the econ­omy’s abil­ity to re­turn to a path of rapid growth, list­ing it among his gov­ern­ment’s top pri­or­i­ties and pledg­ing its com­mit­ment to sys­tem­atic re­forms amid con­cerns that the coro­n­avirus dis­ease (Covid-19) pandemic could plunge In­dia into a pro­longed slow­down.

“Yes! We will def­i­nitely get our growth back,” Modi said in his speech to a con­fer­ence on ‘Get­ting Growth Back’ or­gan­ised by the Con­fed­er­a­tion of In­dian In­dus­try (CII) to mark the or­gan­i­sa­tion’s 125th an­niver­sary, as In­dia emerges from the Covid-19 out­break and sub­se­quent 68-day lock­down.

“Some of you may think in this time of crisis how could I say this with such con­fi­dence? There are many rea­sons for this con­fi­dence. I’ve con­fi­dence in In­dia’s ca­pa­bil­i­ties and crisis man­age­ment. I’ve con­fi­dence in In­dia’s tal­ent and tech­nol­ogy; I’ve con­fi­dence in In­dia’s in­no­va­tion and in­tel­lect. I’ve con­fi­dence in In­dia’s farm­ers, MSMEs [micro, small and medium en­ter­prises] and en­trepreneur­s,” the Prime Minister said in Hindi through a video link.

Modi’s first ma­jor speech on the econ­omy since the post-Covid-19 lock­down be­gan on March 25 came a day af­ter Moody’s In­vestors Ser­vice cut In­dia’s rat­ing by one notch to the low­est in­vest­ment grade with a neg­a­tive out­look, cit­ing grow­ing risks that Asia’s third largest econ­omy will face a pro­longed pe­riod of slower growth.

Ac­cord­ing to of­fi­cial data re­leased on Fri­day, the econ­omy grew 3.1% in the three months ended March 31, 2020, and 4.2% — the slow­est pace in 11 years — in the fi­nan­cial year 2019-20.

The pro­longed na­tion­wide lock­down in the af­ter­math of the Covid-19 pandemic is ex­pected to dent growth fur­ther.

Moody’s said the low­er­ing of In­dia’s rat­ing re­flects its view that “the coun­try’s pol­icy mak­ing in­sti­tu­tions will be chal­lenged in en­act­ing and im­ple­ment­ing poli­cies which ef­fec­tively mit­i­gate the risks of a sus­tained pe­riod of rel­a­tively low growth, sig­nif­i­cant fur­ther de­te­ri­o­ra­tion in the gen­eral gov­ern­ment fis­cal po­si­tion and stress in the fi­nan­cial sec­tor.”

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