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India To Boost Investment And Infrastructure To Revive Growth

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India’s government plans structural reforms to kick-start foreign and domestic investment.

The structural reforms also include job creation to address challenges faced by its economy, ranging from a sluggish growth to weak consumption.

This was made known on Friday.

Finance Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, presented the federal budget for the financial year 2019 – 2020, outlining the priorities for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s second term, following a landslide election victory.

“We need to invest heavily in infrastructure, digital economy, job creation in small and medium firms,’’ Sitharaman said.

She said the government will ease foreign direct investment (FDI) in single-brand retail and open up FDI in the aviation, insurance, media and animation sectors.

The infrastructure initiatives include upgrading of 125,000 kilometres of roads over the next five years at a cost of $11.6 billion.

The government also wants to bolster railways, waterways and port infrastructure to enhance connectivity, she said.

Sitharaman said the goal of turning India into an economy with a GDP of $5 trillion by 2025 was within reach.

She added that the country would become a $3 trillion economy by the end of the current financial year.

Modi, who was re-elected in May, faces the daunting challenge of reviving India’s slowing economy amid concerns over unemployment and a deepening agrarian crisis.

India’s GDP saw a growth of 5.8 per cent in its quarter ending March, that has made it lose its tag of the fastest-growing large economy to China.

The unemployment rate in India, which has a burgeoning youth population, also rose to 6.1 per cent in 2018, it’s highest in 45 years.

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