India must increase expenditure on research and development: NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant

Recounting the multiple steps that the government has taken in the past to make India a preferred investment destination, Kant said infrastructure will be the key driver for India’s growth. “We are working on improving logistics in India and makin...

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India must increase its expenditure on research and development, enhance innovation and strengthen its intellectual property rights (IPR) regime to enable high-end manufacturing a reality, NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said.

Recounting the multiple steps that the government has taken in the past to make India a preferred investment destination, Kant said infrastructure will be the key driver for India’s growth. “We are working on improving logistics in India and making it more cost-effective,” he said.


Talking about the Atmanirbhar Bharat, Kant said it is not about protectionism. “It is about Make in India for the world,” he said.

Kant was speaking at the virtual National MNCs Conference 2020, hosted by the Confederation of Indian Industry on Monday. India attracted foreign direct investment of $35 billion between April and August this year, a growth of 13% compared to $31.6 billion during the same period last year.

According to Kant, the government is pushing for strategic disinvestment and asset monetisation to raise revenue. “We are looking at asset monetisation across power lines, gas grids, roads, and airports,” he said.

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Commenting on the government’s vision to boost manufacturing in India, Kant said the recently announced production linked incentive scheme across 10 sectors will result in manufacturing output to the tune of $26 billion or over Rs 520 crore by the end of five years.

Talking about the labour reforms introduced by the government, Kant said some states have already undertaken labour reforms. “I hope other states will follow suit and this would make India’s manufacturing competitive,” he said. The labour ministry has consolidated 29 labour laws into four codes, three of which were passed in the Parliament recently.

Speaking on the agricultural reforms, Kant said these are historic agricultural market reforms. “Will ensure freedom for farmers besides attracting investments across the food chain,” he added.
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