Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal has said the PM GatiShakti National Master Plan is a game-changing initiative and will help fast-track infrastructure projects in the country with better planning and implementation through geospatial mapping.
He said the PM GatiShakti will help in making infrastructure plans in a better way. It can help avoid places that can come in the way of infrastructure projects like forests, water bodies or mountain ranges by spotting them using technology, he said.
“PM GatiShakti is basically a geospatial mapping of everything in the country, including forests, wildlife sanctuaries, railway infrastructure, highways, location of different industries…different maps that collectively make up PM GatiShakti. They are interconnected,” he said.
He was speaking at the annual 2022 Forbes India Leadership Awards (FILA 2022) ceremony in Mumbai on Friday evening.
Goyal said it is technology at its best “in terms of our ability to plan, implement and monitor projects smarter and better; and also locate industries smarter”.
The PM GatiShakti will fast-track the projects and avoid being delayed due to environmental or any other reason through better and efficient planning, he said.
The minister also said the country recently signed a free-trade agreement (FTA) with the UAE, which is the fast-ever negotiated in the world in just 88 days to finish. The country will have such pacts with the UK, Australia and Canada. “Discussions with the EU will start soon, talks with Israel are going on,” he said. The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) also wants to do business with India, Goyal added.
“All of this is happening because they want India in resilient supply chains. They look upon us as a trusted partner.”
He said that in this, logistics and infrastructure play a very important role and the PM GatiShakti National Master Plan can really help.
Goyal, who also holds the textiles portfolio, said the government has come out with a project to set up seven mega textile parks, which will be located strategically, to bring the whole ecosystem at one place, bringing down logistics costs. “This will help India become more competitive.”
On the Aatmanirbhar Bharat plan, he said the programme is not about closing doors; it’s actually opening them wider. “We want to engage with the world from the position of strength. Our start-ups should be world-class. Technology should be the best in the world. We should be recognised for the opportunity we offer to the world.”
On the National Single Window, he said it is in beta version. “We will take stakeholders’ feedback. We want ideas on how to reduce the compliance burden.”
He said, “Clutches of subsidies can be short term. The government investing in infrastructure can give a fillip to the economy but the larger burden will have to be taken by the industry. They will have to look at investments coming in and pushing growth in the country.”
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had launched in October the Rs 100-lakh-crore national master plan for multi-modal connectivity that aims to develop infrastructure to reduce logistic costs and boost the economy.
The PM Gati Shakti targets to cut logistic costs, increase cargo handling capacity and reduce the turnaround time, Modi had said at a function to launch the plan. Gati Shakti joins different departments for the coordinated development of projects from road to railways, aviation to agriculture.