Updated on: Wednesday, November 10, 2021, 09:07 PM IST

WEF President Borge Brende lauds Modi government's response to COVID-19 pandemic, and its reforms undertaken to boost Indian economy

He also applauded India's renewed focus on the space sector via the recently launched Indian Space Association
WEF President Borge Brende | Photo: IANS

WEF President Borge Brende | Photo: IANS


World Economic Forum (WEF) president Borge Brende has lauded the Modi government's "agile" response to the COVID-19 pandemic, its commitments at the recent COP26 summit and the structural reforms undertaken by it to boost the economy.

In a piece which has been posted on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's website, he said that India has a unique opportunity and an important role in fostering regional cooperation in South Asia, thus creating new opportunities for growth and prosperity.

Noting the structural reforms effected in the last few years by the government to boost the long-term outlook of the economy, he said it's vision to catalyse India's transformation is evident in the launch of initiatives such as the Gati Shakti National Master Plan and the 'Atmanirbhar Bharat' mission.

Praising the government for placing due emphasis on manufacturing, Brende said, With the reshoring of global supply chains and quest for geographical diversification in their redistribution, India offers a safe and stable destination and could emerge as an important hub for global manufacturing."

India has a demographic advantage, skilled workforce, technical know-how, and the research and development capacity needed to create a strong niche for itself in the global market, Brende said.

Referring to the national infrastructure pipeline and the national monetization plan to boost infrastructure development, he said these wide-ranging development agenda supports initiatives across multiple sectors, including reforms to consolidate many disparate labour laws, drafting of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, and banking reforms.

He also applauded India's renewed focus on the space sector via the recently launched Indian Space Association, and said the country can emerge as an important hub for global manufacturing.

Lauding India's handling of the pandemic, Brende wrote, "Despite the economic devastation caused by the virus, India's agile response has been commendable, especially as the country rallied to manage a deadly second wave of the virus early in 2021.

"India was the first country to feel the impact of the virulent Delta variant but quickly swung into action to ensure that as many people as possible were vaccinated. One billion doses of the vaccine have already been administered."

In addition to protecting its own population, India has also acted in the world's best interest by providing medical supplies and equipment to more than 150 countries and placing a critical supply of the COVID-19 vaccine on the world market, he said.

"Indeed, the pandemic is an inflection point for India to introspect on its potential as a global leader, especially coming at a time when the country is celebrating 75 years of independence," added Brende.

Appreciating India for meeting global commitments on climate change mitigation, he said India is well ahead of target to achieve other ambitious commitments such as making renewables 40 per cent of its energy mix by 2030 and managing the sequestration of 2.5 billion tonnes of carbon.

Praising Modi's 'Panchamrit pledge' at the ongoing COP26 Summit in Glasgow, he said that it will see the country address five key sectors of its economy as a means to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions.

Mentioning India's reform trajectory, Brende wrote that it is marking 30 years since the deregulation of its economy, which is another significant turning point in its history and a testament to its ability to reinvent itself.

"The current administration's efforts to promote digital empowerment and last-mile financial inclusion are especially noteworthy. Under the auspices of a government-backed digital payment system, millions of poor, unbanked families have entered the formal economy and can now access basic financial services," he said.

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Published on: Wednesday, November 10, 2021, 09:07 PM IST