Thu, 05 Aug 2021

New Delhi [India], June 13 (ANI): NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant on Sunday said that path to India's economic recovery post the Covid-29 pandemic lies in attempting to focus on capturing the export markets, as the world is flush with liquidity due to the various packages put in by various countries, and also push for consumer demand as the economy opens up.

Kant on Sunday in an exclusive interview to ANI said that the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) report found India's Aspirational Districts Programme (ADP), launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2018, has benefited almost 21 per cent of the nation's population and improved their quality of life.

He said that the UNDP report found the ADP acted as a "catalyst for expediting development" that brought about "major changes" in sectors such as health care, nutrition, and education.

When asked about the impact of coronavirus outbreak on Indian economy and path to its recovery, he said, "India is seeing today is a huge improvement in its exports. So, we should look at the global market, the world is awash with liquidity, because of the different packages which different countries have put in so there's a lot of money available across the world.

"We should try and focus and capture the export markets and fourthly, I think there's a need to push for consumer demand as the economy opens up, providing greater liquidity spreading free ration as the Prime Minister has done till Diwali, well all this will help the economy to boost up in due course," the Niti Ayog CEO said.

Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced free rations under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana till Diwali this year. It will cover 80 crore poor who will be provided with free ration under the scheme amid lockdowns and pandemic.

Kant said the country can use the Covid pandemic as an opportunity to attact the world's best manufacturers.

"I think it's a huge opportunity. COVID has accelerated the change, global supply chains will get relocated, there will be a China plus one strategy for manufacturing, a lot of foreign direct investment (FDI) has come into India and it's an opportunity for us to attract best manufacturers from all the world," Kant said.

He also encouraged Indian companies to think big and to produce at global scale and size in order to penetrate global markets instead of focussing on domestic demand.

"There is a big market outside this huge amount of liquidity right now. And what you get in the export market is far more than what you get in the domestic market and therefore size and scale. Use the strength of your domestic market to penetrate global markets. If you are at that size and scale, then your cost of production will fall. And therefore, India will become highly competitive in the global market. And that is the objective, the production linked incentive scheme," Kant told ANI.

Advising the Indian business sector, Kant said that COVID has disrupted business in a big way but it has also provided an opportunity to maximise the use of technology to leapfrog across areas and make India the easiest place to do business.

"This is also an opportunity to make ourselves easy and simple, do away with a lot of rules, regulation that we built up over the years, make India the simplest and the easiest place to do business, use technology, and I think this is also an opportunity to get into cutting edge areas of growth. This is an opportunity to use technology to leapfrog across a whole range of areas, we should use new technology to leapfrog," Kant said.

He said that he has great belief on the resurgence of Indian economy and advocated for mass vaccination at great pace.

"I'm a great believer that for this economy, we need to vaccinate fast which we are doing now in a very big way, the government has ordered a lot of vaccines to come in in the subsequent months, so I quite agree with the government approach that by December we should have vaccinated the entire population," said Kant.

He also informed that the government has put a lot of focus on infrastructure. "We've created the National Infrastructure pipeline, huge emphasis on that and India is seeing huge improvement in its exports."Talking about the initial steps for Indian economy on future roadmap post pandemic, Kant said that it needs to be watchful as nature of the virus is pretty unknown.

"Countries which have been very adventurous to totally opened out, then get back and start closing this has been the strict trend across all over look at what is happening in UK now," said Kant. (ANI)

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