CII Media Releases
Departments are embracing Interministerial Consultation to make India an attractive Business Destination: Panel of Secretaries
May 18, 2024

Departments are embracing Interministerial Consultation to make India an attractive Business Destination: Panel of Secretaries


The government has been assiduously engaging in cross ministerial consultation in policy making. This is in view of the growing recognition that policies across ministries should reinforce each other to take the economy seamlessly on a higher growth trajectory. This also recognises that a packaged investment policy could not be expected due to the involvement of multiple agencies in policy making. This was stated by Mr Rajesh Kumar Singh, Secretary, Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India during the Special Plenary: Future of Competitive India: Should India have an Integrated Trade, Investment & Industrial Policy at the Annual Business Summit 2024 held by CII today.

Elaborating further on the subject, Mr Singh mentioned that several reforms were being undertaken by the government to facilitate business and the trend will continue. For instance, FDI reforms, including the most recent reforms in space, is one such example. Besides, the PLI scheme is the centrepiece in industrial policy to create investment and jobs. On the ease of doing business, the DPIIT is working with the Work Bank on the new survey-based ease of doing business ranking which would dwell on entry, operation and exit of companies. The Jan Vishwas scheme 2 for facilitating decriminalisation of laws, getting the patent regime closer to the global benchmark and using tariff policy to promote Atmanirbhar Bharat are some of the other areas on which the DPIIT is presently engaged, he added.

While concurring with the views of the earlier speaker, Mr. Dammu Ravi, Secretary (ER), Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India said that the age of the government working in silos is over and there is frequent consultation not only within Ministries but also with industry associations for putting in place policies which are business friendly and attractive for drawing investments. He underscored the importance of developing an ecosystem of competitiveness. Higher growth needs competitiveness to position itself more strongly, according to Mr. Ravi.

He exhorted industry to expand its global footprint mentioning that trade is a larger pie which the industry should focus on to grow and prosper. According to Mr Ravi, integration into global and regional value chains is necessary for more competitive manufacturing. Resilient supply chains are more significant due to near shoring. As industry moves out of India, M&A activity will increase and manufacturing by Indian companies will be outsourced.

He alluded to the high cost of logistics as a key constraint. Further, he was emphatic about the use of technology in manufacturing such as The Internet of things, blockchain etc to bring efficiency and moving up the value chain while addressing the gaps in skill development.

Signalling the increasing role of economic diplomacy, Mr Ravi mentioned that the Ministry of External Affairs has created an office of Economic Diplomacy and is working to create a network between Overseas missions and Businesses to help Industry to go global.

Ms Sumita Dawra, Secretary, Ministry of Labour & Employment, Government of India, during her exposition, stated that as GVCs become more anchored in India, a focus on quality employment becomes imperative to take advantage of the demographic dividend and realise the dream of Viksit Bharat. India needs to align its labour laws with the present economic milieu to improve productivity of labour to stay ahead in terms of competitiveness, she added.

According to Ms Dawra, the government has undertaken a plethora of facilitative reforms to reduce the multiplicity of laws. So far 29 labour related acts have been consolidated into four codes with the objective of reinforcing trade and investment, facilitating ease of doing business and reducing compliances, addressing the issue of decriminalisation, addressing skill development needs, dispute resolution among others.

Uniform Definitions across all codes, one registration for establishment, web-based inspection rather than district inspection, replacement of imprisonment by fines, first time offenses being made compoundable, single licences for contract workers, expanding contract labour for inter-state migrants and integration in labour legislations, are some of the other policies announced by the government to promote ease of doing business, she explained.

Ms. Dawra mentioned that the codes have also looked at leveraging technology by strengthening the electronic processes and the use of e-shram for social security, facilitation of women empowerment etc.

India needs to focus on four major issues namely skilling and reskilling; labour market flexibility, future of work and aligning demand with supply, she added.

Mr T. K Ramachandran, Secretary, Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways also agreed with his colleagues to underpin the importance of multi-ministerial coordination and alluded that pulling off the deal on Chabahar port is a shining example of this collaboration. The PM Gati Shakti is another prime example of embracing the coordinated approach towards taking India forward and so has been the coordinated work towards EoDB and CoDB, he stated.

He mentioned that there are four key areas of focus by the ministry to improve industrial competitiveness viz developing port based industrial clusters as trade hubs which would help to reduce logistics cost, boosting investment and infusing capital in maritime sector to promote trade and economy, promoting private trade investment through public private partnerships and promoting seamless trade through enhanced multi-modality and port-rail-road connectivity. The government is planning a maritime development fund to support multiple areas for promoting trade infrastructure and increase private participation, according to Mr Ramachandran.

Mr R. Dinesh, President, CII maintained that more efforts are required by the Centre and States to facilitate an inward focus to ensure that investment comes in and is linked to manufacturing.

Mr. Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, CII moderated the discussion.


18 May 2024

New Delhi

Email to a friend   Print
Download CII App:
App Store Google Play