At the ASEAN Business and Investment Summit in Kuala Lumpur, Prime Minister Narendra Modi wooed investors while highlighting the slew of reform measures his government in India took to put the economy back on track. He pitched India as “the most attractive investment destination.”
“Reform is not an end in itself. Reform for me is just a way station on the long journey to the destination. The destination is the transformation of India,” PM Modi said while talking on the transformation India was going through.
PM Modi went on the say that when the BJP-led government assumed office in May 2014, the economy faced serious challenges which have been rectified in his 18 months of power.
“GDP growth is up and inflation is down, foreign investment is up and the current account deficit is down, tax revenues are up and interest rates are down, the fiscal deficit is down and the rupee is stable,” PM Modi explained.
“And we know that our time has come. We are at a take-off stage. I invite you to come and see the winds of change in India,” PM Modi announced.
“To re-vitalise the flow of investments, the second wave of structural and financial reforms have been launched,” he added.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also mentioned his government’s pet project, the Make in India campaign and announced, “We are working in all ways to make India a global manufacturing hub.”
PM Modi also said that his government was aggressively working on the ease of doing business and referred to the World Bank’s ‘Ease of Doing Business Report of 2016′ in which India jumped 12 spots.
“India is a land of immense opportunities…Our democratic values and an alert judicial system ensure the safety of your investments….We are particularly working to make India the easiest place to do business,” the PM said.
He also assured ASEAN business leaders that all bottlenecks adversely affecting growth were being removed. He also mentioned a simplified tax regime that India was looking forward to.
“We are also coming up with Tax Free Infrastructure Bonds with a view to broaden the corporate bond market and to provide long term finance for infrastructure…We have ended retrospective taxation….We are hopeful of rolling it (Goods and Services Tax) out in 2016. This will create a unified system of taxation across the country,” the PM promised.
PM Modi is on a three-day to Malaysia to address the 13th ASEAN-India Summit.
“Reached Kuala Lumpur. Today’s programmes include ASEAN Business & Investment Summit, 13th ASEAN-India Summit & one-to-one meetings,” PM Narendra Modi tweeted after he arrived in Kuala Lumpur early on Saturday morning.
On the sidelines of the summit, PM Modi also met Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
“Working through lunch with an old friend. PM @AbeShinzo hosts PM @narendramodi for the second bilateral,” External Affairs Ministry Spokesman Vikas Swarup tweeted.
On Sunday, PM Modi will address East Asia Summit and also speak to the Indian diaspora in Malaysia at another event.
(With inputs from PTI)