Prime Minister Narendra Modi attends a plenary session of BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) Summit, in Xiamen, China September 4, 2017. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu
Xiamen (China), September 4 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said that the Goods and Services Tax (GST) introduced in July this year is the biggest economic reform ever in India.
“India is changing fast into one of the most open economies in the world today,” Modi said while addressing the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) Business Council meet here as part of the 9th BRICS Summit.
“Foreign direct investment inflows are at an all-time high, rising by 40 per cent,” he said.
Stating that India has moved up in the World Bank index of ease of doing business and up 32 spots in last two years in the Global Competitiveness Index, Modi said: “The Goods and Services Tax that was introduced in July is India’s biggest economic reform measure ever. In one stroke, a unified market of 1.3 billion people has been created.”
He said that programmes like Digital India, Start-up India and Make in India were changing the economic landscape of the country.
“They are assisting India turn into a knowledge based, skill supported and technology driven society,” Modi stated.
He said that the BRICS Business Council played a vital role in giving practical shape to the vision of the bloc’s partnership.
“The partnerships you have forged and the networks you have created are energising the economic growth stories in each BRICS country,” he said, while praising the council for entering into a memorandum of understanding with the New Development Bank (NDB), the multilateral development bank established by the BRICS member states.
Modi also voiced his appreciation that the BRICS Business Council has matching priorities of trade and investment facilitation, promoting skills development, infrastructure development, small and medium enterprises (SME) development, e-commerce and digital economy.
He said that the council’s work towards establishment of a BRICS Rating Agency, energy cooperation, green finance, and digital economy was noteworthy.
“Let me conclude by saying that as governments, we will offer full support to your endeavours. And we also count on the BRICS Business Council to take us closer to our common objective of improving business and investment cooperation,” the Indian Prime Minister.
The council’s meeting was also attended by host Chinese President Xi Jinping, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Brazilian President Michel Temer, and South African President Jacob Zuma.