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News18 » Business
3-min read

Indian Inc�s Budget Wishlist

Corporate India's GenNext voices their concerns over various issues related to India's economic policies.

News18 |

Updated:February 18, 2007, 10:14 PM IST
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Indian Inc�s Budget Wishlist
Corporate India's GenNext voices their concerns over various issues related to India's economic policies.

New Delhi: India is on the move like never before. The reform process started with the liberalisation of the economy in the 1991 is bearing fruit today. And the most significant consequence has been the emergence of a new face of entrepreneurship. At CNN-IBN, we call this the birth of a Young India.

Sixteen days before the Union Finance Minister rise to present the Union Budget 2007, things have never looked better. The economy is growing in about 9 per cent, the industry is scorching at a growth rate of about 11 per cent, and in the second week of February, corporate India has sealed up deals in excess of $25 billion.

In that context, CNN-IBN's Shirin Bhan spoke to a large group of representatives from the Corporate India's GenNext on CNN-IBN’s Special Show Rising India: Corporate India's Generation Next to find out where they see the economic blueprint of India in the next the couple of years. It was the largest congregation of corporate leaders in Indian television history.

If you were the Finance Minister, what would be your three key reform priorities?

For Ratul Puri , infrastructure, primary education and primary healthcare are the three key areas. "The government should focus on these areas and move out of other areas," he says.

Rahul Munjal agrees with all three. "But there is one more thing that we have not discussed. That is inflation. If they keep increasing the way they are and the Budget doesn't correct that, it's going to go up further," he warns.

Rajiv Memani say the entire monetary policy is currently oriented towards containing inflation. "But I think reducing the customs duty would probably be the biggest step and I think that's what he will try and target through the Budget."

Dikshu C Kukreja wants to add the proposal for "creating an environment which is more enabling. So, I would say if more public-private partnerships are initiated, that would definitely create an environment that would actually materialise into double-digit growth. The government needs to step back in areas in which it's not competent enough and let the private sector come in."

Anuj Gupta of Final Quadrant says infrastructure and education are key. "I think there has to be some system of access to information. That's the key success factor in the developed parts of the world."

Vivek Agarwal says for improving the public education system, it should be made compulsory for all bureaucrats and ministers to send their children to government schools.

"To encourage investment and growth in the education space, the government needs to allow private sector and for-profit organisations to function in that space, to open schools and colleges because that's the way you can allow investors to put in money and take returns out of it," says another participant.

Shivinder calls for opening up of health insurance for FDI. "I don't think the government is giving it adequate focus or even understands its impact. As for the proposal on sending the children of bureaucrats and ministers to government schools, I think it will have a very large-scale impact which we don't really understand."

Rajiv Bajaj says when the economy grows as robustly as it will, it will take a heavy toll on the environment, both the way goods are created and the way goods are used. "I hope that in this Budget or in the subsequent ones, the Finance Minister will bring in this aspect on how we protect our environment as we grow. Because ultimately, it's supposed to be about quality of life."

India will find out on 28th of February which was the Finance Minister is actually going to swing as far as the Opportunity Economy is concerned.

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