97% FDI To Come Through Automatic Route; DIPP Secretary

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Vowing to further accelerate speed of decision making, the government aims to achieve a level of self governance whereby 97 per cent of foreign direct investment (FDI) would come to India through an "automatic" route without requiring any bureaucratic approval, Secretary in the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) Mr Amitabh Kant said at an ASSOCHAM event.

97% FDI To Come Through Automatic Route; DIPP Secretary
"Following recent announcement of opening up 15 sectors for which Press Note has been issued today, India has thrown open 92 per cent of the FDI route through automatic channel," said Mr Kant while inaugurating the 95th Annual Session of The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM).

"We do not want any business man to come to Udyog Bhawan or the Finance Ministry, that is also the mandate from the Prime Minister, Mr Narendra Modi," Mr Kant said at the Annual General Meeting of ASSOCHAM.

The DIPP Secretary said a lot has been done in the area of easing investment in the highway sector and the results would be visible in the near future. Contracts worth Rs 3.5 lakh crore have been awarded in the highway sector through different channels like EPC since the PPP model was not working to be successful.  The Reserve Bank of India has played a significant role in allowing banks to sell bad loans in the highway sector.

The challenge is to continue this pace of reforms, helping and unleashing in the process a vibrant energy in the form of Start-ups. "Snapdeals and Flipkarts are challenging Amazons of the world, these are 20-30 year old start-up entrepreneurs spread across water, bio-technology."

Mr Kant, who has been among the key bureaucrats speeding up the reforms, said these start-ups need as many as 22 compliances.  He said while India has improved its World Bank ranking by 12 points, the country needs to improve for India sake not for the World Bank.

The role of the states is crucial in achieving this task of easing business rules. Mr Kant said there is a huge excitement among the states to compete with each other and improve on their business and industrial echo system.

"While Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh and Jharkhand emerged as the top three states on the Centre's matrix of 100 points, this year the Centre would be measuring the performance of different states on a scale point of 340," said Mr Kant.

"If 10-12 states decide to move fast, India would create 10-12 Singapore and that would take the country's GDP to 9-10 per cent," he added.

Mr Kant also said, "As a country, we must take pride in the infrastructure we have built, Heathrow looks to be of under developed country as compared to Delhi or Mumbai airports."

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