India will continue on the current path of growth for a couple of decades more, bringing benefits of liberalisation to its people and eliminating the curse of poverty, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said here today. Asking Australian superannuation funds industry leaders to invest in India, he emphasised that the growth path the country is moving on, it will stay on it. “Its only then India can eliminate the curse of poverty,” Jaitley said, hoping that the growth rate would last for at least 10-20 years.
“We do believe that 7.5 per cent rate can be improved upon... And government is concentrating on several areas specially rural India,” he said. “People in India are benefiting from the whole process of liberalisation,” he added. Jaitley was speaking at a round-table meeting with top leaders of superannuation fund sector.
The meeting was attended by Australian Minister for Small Businesses and Assistant Treasurer Kelly O’Dwyer, Chairman of Future Fund Peter Costello and Indian High Commissioner Navdeep Suri. Others present at the meeting included a high-powered Indian delegation led by industry body Ficci.
A superannuation fund is a voluntary tax-advantaged pension plan that can act as a supplementary social security pillar in addition to the mandatory occupational plans run by Employee Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO).
Jaitley said the government was opening up the system and almost all sectors have been liberalised. He said number of conditionalities have been removed and Indian government was also conscious of policy stability.
He also assured rationalisation of tax system stating that India offered a huge amount of opportunity for even manufacturing sector, infrastructure sector.
Speaking at the meeting, Ficci President Harshavardhan Neotia said India has made considerable progress over the last year, reflected in improvement in key macroeconomic indicators like GDP growth, inflation, fiscal deficit, current account deficit as well foreign investment inflows.
Most importantly, he said, there is an element of positivity and optimism about India, which is shared not just by domestic industry but also globally. He said superannuation funds have ready to invest funds and we from Indian industry are here to invest projects.