According to Dr. Rajiv Kumar, Vice Chairman, NITI Aayog, the government and the private sector should work in consonance to bring exports at the centre-point of economic activity to take advantage of external demand conditions. Dr. Kumar was addressing the Meeting of the CII Economic Affairs Council in New Delhi.
Elaborating further on the subject, he said that the low share of our goods and services exports is a matter of concern. We need to improve our skill set and human capital as well as take cognisance of external demand conditions, he said. Besides, considering our low per capita income, we should consider our country as small economy on the world stage rather than as the sixth largest economy ready to take on the world.
According to Dr. Kumar the falling rupee is not a cause of worry as it is getting back to its natural value. Besides, there is nothing much that the government should do to stem the fall of the rupee as the move would adversely impact growth. Hence, the prevailing environment should be leveraged to push exports and foreign capital inflows. We also need to revisit safeguard and antidumping duties to boost export growth and set targets to improve our export share.
While lauding the government for the bold and revolutionary reforms in the last four years, Dr. Rajiv Kumar said that the government should be complimented for improving the investment climate in the country which has now become more rule driven. Besides, the accent on transparency, accountability and improvement in government service delivery had been a major sentiment booster. The government is also committed to maintaining fiscal discipline, despite our external vulnerability.
He said that the NITI Aayog was also involved in the drafting of the Land Leasing Act, MSP, doubling farmer’s income, among others. The NITI Aayog would be releasing the Development Agenda for 2022 ‘New India 2022’ in place of Five Year Plans which would be a comprehensive document containing the objectives, current situation and the way forward.
On employment, Dr. Kumar announced that the government will start releasing quarterly data on employment based on household surveys shortly which would address the lacunae and the dearth of current and reliable data on employment in the country. In his view, the rise in rural wages is a testimony to the spike in employment generation in the country.
Dr. Kumar was also concerned about the state of malnutrition among women and children in the country which is coming in the way of leveraging our human capital for improving productivity and growth.