Prime Minister Narendra Modi aims to ‘Make in India’: readers’ comments trump those of the journalist entrepreneur

Who are the beneficiaries of WEF’s commitment?

wef logoIn an obviously partisan article, under a foolish and provocative title*, former management consultant Peter Vanham, based in New York, reports on the India Economic Summit in New Delhi, convened by the World Economic Forum.

klaus schwabIn attendance: Klaus Schwab, the founder and executive chairman of the World Economic Forum, the world’s foremost multistakeholder organization, in which political, business, academic and other ‘leaders of society’ attempt to shape global, regional and industry agendas: all ‘committed to improving the state of the world through public-private cooperation’.

Modi observes protocol

Foreign investors asked if the government really had a pro-business agenda? Why did Modi himself not show up? “If he meets business people”, Anand Mahindra, chairman of Mahindra & Mahindra, said, “he does so via personal invitation, rather than in a meeting organized by someone else”.

The hard truth

Writing in the Financial Times, Vanham reports that a foreign investor, who declined to be identified, expressed impatience with the pace of reforms to make India more business-friendly.

HARDTRUTH commented: the Western analysts and funds want big bang reforms to rush in hot money, make quick profits and get out. They would not be concerned then, if the reforms faced delays and resistance. This would not be in India’s national interest.

What were the elements of the pro-business agenda?

  • reforming the Land Acquisition Act,
  • cutting red tape on the shop floor
  • and harmonising the Goods & Services Tax.

Will they continue to ‘acquire’ the most valuable fertile land for industry?

Harvard economics professor Gita Gopinath insisted “Land acquisition is the biggest reform of them all.”

samiran chakrabortyIn October, Samiran Chakraborty, head of south Asia macro research at Standard Chartered Bank, reassured the nervous:

“Just a year ago, India faced a mini-run on the rupee. Now, an improving economy combined with political stability has made the country a darling of foreign investors, with more than $35bn of portfolio inflows since January”.

He summarised reforms:

“The government is focusing on improving the business environment by reducing inefficiency and cutting red tape. These so-called ‘silent’ reforms may not be headline-grabbing, but they could potentially boost India’s abysmal ranking (142nd out of 189 countries) in the World Bank’s ‘Ease of Doing Business’ survey. Silent reforms are happening in India on multiple levels and their importance should not be ignored.

“Bureaucracy has been scaled back, resulting in fewer layers of decision making. Redundant laws are being scrapped, with 283 such laws expected to be repealed in the winter session of parliament. Importantly, the lengthy process of obtaining government approvals is being reviewed, with the aim of reducing the time taken to register a business to one day from 27 days. And large-scale digitisation of government functions is planned to improve efficiency through a single e-platform connecting all ministries”.

Modi’s ‘Make in India’ campaign

make in india campaign

“These silent reforms are the first steps in Modi’s ‘Make in India’ campaign to encourage manufacturing . . . (which) has stagnated at 16% and needs boosting to secure jobs for India’s rapidly growing young population.

“India may enjoy a huge domestic market of 1.3bn people and a large, educated labour force, but several other conditions need to be met before the share of manufacturing can be pushed up to the desired 25 to 30% of GDP”.

HARDTRUTH may well be correct: “It should be understood that the BJP government of Mr. Modi works for Indian national interest and stability of the economy”.

*Title of Vanham’s article: ”Modi and India’s reforms: a game of chicken”


2 responses to “Prime Minister Narendra Modi aims to ‘Make in India’: readers’ comments trump those of the journalist entrepreneur

  1. Hi there,
    As the author of the FT article you refer to in this blog, I’d like to say that I appreciate your input on this topic. You seem to have a well thought through opinion, and it’s one that deserves to be heard.
    However, I want to assure you I have no partisan intentions by reporting on the topic of Land Reform, or any other reforms in India. I did listen carefully to all that was said by the participants of the India Economic Summit, spoke to many of them, and summarized my findings in this piece. I’m not saying that these observations are the truth, or that when reading this piece, you will find which policies India should or should not pursue.
    Also, please do note that while I am a former consultant, and like to see myself as an entrepreneur, I don’t think my articles should be seen as written through the eyes of a consultant or entrepreneur, unless I explicitly say so (e.g. an op-ed I wrote on Mitt Romney once).
    I wish you all the best with your endeavours,
    Peter Vanham

  2. It is good to hear from you Mr Vanham. In using the term ‘partisan’ I was not referring to land reform but to the article’s apparent addition to the pressure exerted on PM Modi to make life easier and more profitable for participants in the global casino.

    Though I hoped that he would not be elected, having been influenced by adverse reports of his conduct during the Gujarat riots, I have been won over by several instances of his care for the less fortunate in India (collected), coupled with his attention to laxity in the civil service.

    I think and hope that he will put the interests of India first, believing, like the SJM, that these would not be best served by an uncontrolled and indiscriminating influx of foreign investors.

    I wish you success in any endeavour which will improve the lot of the majority in India.

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