NEW DELHI: Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu said yesterday that India is rising up in the global arena to assume a leadership position in issues of climate change, multilateral trade liberalisation and geo-political affair, among others. He added that India is being recognised as a strong power not only in terms of its rising economic and market potential but also for its soft power. The Vice President was delivering the 21st ASSOCHAM JRD Tata Memorial Lecture in New Delhi on 11 November.
Naidu said that JRD Tata was not only a doyen of the Indian industry but also a visionary leader who foresaw a rising India. “He has been synonymous with high ethical standards and the pioneering spirit of entrepreneurship,” the VP said.
Talking of the current economic situation, Naidu said that the fundamentals of the Indian economy are strong and with the Government pursuing various reforms, India has the potential to emerge as one of the leading economies in the next 10 years. He also exuded confidence that the recent measures taken by the Government will simulate investments, attract capital flows and give a push to GDP growth in the coming months.
Expressing pride at being the world’s largest democracy, the Vice President said that India is rising in stature in various fields, including economic, geo-political influence, defence, sports, science, IT and space technology.
Saying that the right kind of environment has been created for doing business, the Naidu called upon industry leaders to make the best use of opportunities. He also said that ‘Rising India’ should mean a rise in the living standards of every Indian. Not only should there be greater ease of doing business but there should be greater “ease of living” as well.
Talking of various public programs such as Digital India, Jan Dhan Yojana and Swachh Bharat, Naidu said that the extensive use of digital technology has reduced corruption and improved transparency.
Digital India is transforming the country into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy and Jan Dhan Yojana created a world record in opening the largest number of bank accounts in the shortest time, the Vice President noted. “It has made financial inclusion a reality,” he said.
Laying the vision for the future, Naidu said that now focus must be on financial literacy and called upon the private sector to work with the Governments, financial institutions and NGOs to bring financial literacy to the masses.
Acknowledging that back-end solutions of several Fortune 500 companies are being developed in Indian cities such as Bengaluru, Hyderabad and Pune, Naidu said that we must use cutting edge technologies to come up with new products and processes and become the digital hub of the world. “I would like the private sector to create the right ecosystem for young Indian talent flourish by according greater importance to research and innovation,” he added.
Calling infrastructure a key pillar for national development, the Vice President said that tremendous progress has been made in this regard in recent years.
With an average of 27 kms of national highways and 134 kms of roads being built every day, our villages are better connected and this will improve their overall economic activities, he said.
For realising India’s demographic dividend, Naidu emphasised on providing it the right kind of skills and opportunities. Quoting the World Economic Forum’s report “The Future of Jobs 2018”, he said that more than half of Indian workers will require reskilling by 2022 to meet the talent demands of the future and called upon the industry to join hands with the government to create a workforce that has the 21st century skills.
The Vice President also stressed upon the need to ensure equal opportunities for women and asked for creation of an ecosystem that gives them opportunities to grow and contribute to national development.
Highlighting that India wants peace and good neighbourly relations, the Naidu said that terror is enemy of humanity and peace is prerequisite of progress.
Shri Balkrishan Goenka, President, ASSOCHAM; Dr Niranjan Hiranandani, Senior Vice President, Vineet Agarwal, Vice President and Deepak Sood, Secretary General, ASSOCHAM, were among the dignitaries present at the event which was attended by diplomats, senior government officials and other industry leaders.
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