Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in December, met chief executives of leading companies across sectors ranging from banking to telecom, to health and electronics, for inputs for the upcoming Union Budget. Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman will present the Budget for FY22-23, on February 1.
Modi's meeting was a part of the many interactions that he is holding ahead of the Budget to receive inputs and suggestions from the private sector.
Around the same time, he met leading private equity/ venture capital players to seek suggestions on making India a more attractive investment destination.
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The meeting was attended by the CEOs of top banks and firms across infrastructure, automobiles, telecom, consumer goods, textile, renewables, hospitality, technology, healthcare, space, and electronics industry, official sources said.
Modi said the government “is firmly committed to take initiatives” that would give impetus to economic progress, The Economic Times reported. While the government would support the industry, he also said it wanted industry to grow, continue to invest and take risks.
The CEOs who attended the meeting were unanimous about being “emboldened and encouraged” by the PM’s vision and that the industry would put its best foot forward in realising it.
Industry leaders present at the meeting also put forth their insight and suggestions. They told the PM that while industry continued to work on vaccinations, the government needed to come up with a view on booster doses and provide a roadmap for industry to transition to a greener future.
In addition, the interaction underlined the importance of knowledge-intensive and tech-intensive growth and on steps to further ring in ease of doing business.
Representatives of the steel industry told the prime minister that nearly Rs 1 lakh-crore of investments had been announced for the next few years between JSW, JSPL, Tata Steel and ArcelorMittal-Nippon Steel.
In addition, Oyo’s Ritesh Agarwal underlined the importance of startups and how they can continue to play a big role in creating jobs and usher in investments.
After the meeting, Mallika Srinivasan, CMD, Tractors and Farm Equipments Ltd, said, “The whole interaction today was about how to do we take India forward. It was an open interaction and we could freely communicate our thoughts … PM’s suggestions, comments, expansive thinking, and vision fills us with a very strong sense of confidence that India will move ahead very strongly in the coming decade,”
Additionally, Uday Kotak, CEO of Kotak Mahindra Bank, said the financial sector is ready to support the economy and the industry. “I am very enthused about the potential of India and Indian banking and finance is out there and ready to support industry across SIDI (sustainability, inclusion, digital and infrastructure).”
Further, Rajesh Gopinathan, CEO & MD, TCS, said after the meeting, “Prime Minister’s focus on research, innovation, his belief in the capacity that India has, is to step way beyond where we are. He has laid out a clear vision statement that in every sector, every industry, we should be in the top 5 in the global rankings and if possible number 1. That kind of attitude, that kind of tone from the top will energise the country to go way beyond our current success and strive for much more.”