Last Updated : May 16, 2020 07:40 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Ease of Business and Make in India headline Day 4 of stimulus measures

Today's announcements focused on introducing structural reforms and the need to decongest sectors.

After announcing measures aimed at resurrecting MSMEs, rural economy and agriculture sector battered by the COVID-19 outbreak, FM Nirmala Sitharaman on May 16 unveiled the fourth tranche of stimulus package designed to help achieve the goal of Atmanirbhar Bharat.

Today's announcements focused on introducing structural reforms and the need to decongest sectors.

Setting the tone for the press meet, Sitharaman said policy simplification is needed to get the economy back on track.

Close

"We need to prepare for tough global competition. When we speak of Atmanirbhar Bharat, we are not looking inwards, it is not isolationist policy, it is making India rely on its strengths, ready to face global challenges," she said.

COVID-19 Vaccine

Frequently Asked Questions

View more
How does a vaccine work?

A vaccine works by mimicking a natural infection. A vaccine not only induces immune response to protect people from any future COVID-19 infection, but also helps quickly build herd immunity to put an end to the pandemic. Herd immunity occurs when a sufficient percentage of a population becomes immune to a disease, making the spread of disease from person to person unlikely. The good news is that SARS-CoV-2 virus has been fairly stable, which increases the viability of a vaccine.

How many types of vaccines are there?

There are broadly four types of vaccine — one, a vaccine based on the whole virus (this could be either inactivated, or an attenuated [weakened] virus vaccine); two, a non-replicating viral vector vaccine that uses a benign virus as vector that carries the antigen of SARS-CoV; three, nucleic-acid vaccines that have genetic material like DNA and RNA of antigens like spike protein given to a person, helping human cells decode genetic material and produce the vaccine; and four, protein subunit vaccine wherein the recombinant proteins of SARS-COV-2 along with an adjuvant (booster) is given as a vaccine.

What does it take to develop a vaccine of this kind?

Vaccine development is a long, complex process. Unlike drugs that are given to people with a diseased, vaccines are given to healthy people and also vulnerable sections such as children, pregnant women and the elderly. So rigorous tests are compulsory. History says that the fastest time it took to develop a vaccine is five years, but it usually takes double or sometimes triple that time.

View more
Show

In order to ensure the investment reboot takes off seamlessly, Sitharaman said the government will be fast-tracking investment clearances, there will be a special cell for seamless approvals and upgradation of industrial infrastructure.

Track this blog for highlights from Day 4 of FM’s press meet on stimulus package

The government is betting on these eight sectors to revive economic sentiments — Coal, minerals, defence, civil aviation, power distribution companies in UTs, space and atomic energy.

"The structural reforms being announced today will impact those sectors which are new horizons of growth, unleashing new investment, boosting production and creating jobs," she said.

In the coal sector, government's monopoly is being removed and commercial mining will now see light of the day. The government will spend Rs 50,000 crore to ensure evacuation infrastructure in coal sector.

To provide a fillip to the minerals sector, Sitharaman said there will be a seamless mining and exploration regime and 500 mining blocks will be offered, alongwith joint auction of bauxite and coal blocks

The distinction between captive and non-captive mines will be removed and stamp duty will also be rationalised.

In a major development for the defence sector, the FDI limit in the sector has been raised to 74 percent from 49 percent.

The government also said there will be 'corporatisation' of the ordnance boards and there will be a separate budget for procurement.

The aviation sector, reeling under massive losses, got a major boost with Sitharaman announcing that curbs on using Indian air space will be removed, thus reducing travel time.

"We will be able to get to our destination in shortest possible time saving fuel and time. It will entail benefits to the tune of of Rs 1,000 crore per year for the aviation sector," Sitharaman said.

She also said that six more airports will be up for auction.

Sitharaman said India can become a global hub for Aircraft Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO).

"The tax regime for the MRO ecosystem has been rationalized. Aircraft component repairs and airframe maintenance to increase from Rs 800 crore to Rs 2,000 crore in three years," she said.

To boost private sector investment in social infrastructure, she announced a revamped 'Viability Gap Funding' scheme of Rs 8,100 crore.

For the power sector, Sitharaman said a tariff policy with reforms will be released, including consumer rights, promotion of industry and sustainability of sector.

To encourage participation of private entities in space activities, private companies will be allowed to use ISRO's facilities and other relevant assets to improve their capacities.

"Future projects for planetary exploration, outer space travel, etc. to be open for the private sector," she said.

Ushering in reforms in the atomic energy sector, Sitharaman said research reactors to be done in PPP mode (for medical isotopes)

A PPP mode facility will be established for irradiation tech for food and the startup ecosystem will be linked with the nuclear sector

"Technology Development-cum-Incubation centres will be set up for fostering synergy between research facilities and tech entrepreneurs," Sitharaman said.

Follow our full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak here
First Published on May 16, 2020 05:22 pm
Sections