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CII agenda to achieve 10 p.c. growth

By Sushma Ramachandran

NEW DELHI, APRIL 12. The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) has outlined a ten-point agenda for the Government aimed at sustaining a 10 per cent growth rate and making India a developed country by 2020. The chamber says the agenda will "fulfil Prime Minister, Atal Behari Vajpayee's vision of making India a developed nation by 2020".

According to CII President, Anand Mahindra, the ten-point agenda pertains to reforms in infrastructure, agriculture, social infrastructure, entrepreneurship and self-employment, VAT (value added tax), foreign relations, manufacturing, governance, fiscal management and exports.

He says, "It will provide the necessary impetus to sustain the current growth rate and establish India as a super-power in the global firmament".

The CII has urged the Government to deepen and accelerate reforms to bring about rapid infrastructural expansion and also execute major infrastructure projects speedily, efficiently and in a transparent way. This should be the country's top priority to sustain high growth. It says a key element of the infrastructure policy should be to ensure energy security, which could be done in close cooperation with the U.S., Japan, China and India. "Our new source of oil and energy will have to be Central Asia," Mr. Mahindra suggests.

On the fiscal management front, the CII says there should be constant efforts to reduce the fiscal deficit.

It has stressed the need for rationalisation of taxation and expenditure.

As for exports, it says the Government should aim for a 25 per cent growth on a compounded annual basis through a variety of policy and procedural innovations.

Regarding agriculture, the chamber says time is ripe for a new revolution emphasising multi-cropping, processing, and high tech value-addition in the food chain. Science and technology must be harnessed to create this second agricultural revolution.

Laying special emphasis on social infrastructure, the CII says priority should be given to areas of primary education with accent on quality upgradation and faculty improvement. Another key priority for the government should be to consolidate measures already taken to build new global relationships focusing on the developing world, especially on South and Southeast Asia.

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