Companies have no choice but to be in India: Ashwani Kumar

January 27th, 2012 - 6:16 pm ICT by IANS  

Davos (Switzerland), Jan 27 (IANS) India and China will emerge as the only destinations for companies seeking business as Asia will lead the world economic growth in the coming decade, India’s Minister of State for Planning Ashwani Kumar has said.

“Asia is the default option. No one has a choice but to be in Asia,” Kumar said, addressing a meeting of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) here.

He said India had to make mega investments in infrastructure and education sectors in the next five years to catch up with China in terms of economic growth.

India was planning to invest $1 trillion in physical infrastructure, $35 billion in primary education, and an unspecified amount in skilling up 500 million people by 2020.

“If this is the range of our ambition, all I can say is that anyone ignores Asia at their peril. Asia is the next wave and India, within Asia, is the current wave,” he added.

Godrej Group chairman and CII president-designate Adi Godrej said the Indian economy will not be bogged down by cyclical changes.

“Right now, in India, we have a little bit of a slowdown. But I think the reality of the situation is far different from the sentiment,” Godrej said, stressing India’s huge demographic dividend.

“It is a question of strong belief, strong sentiment and not getting bogged down with the cyclical changes.”

The meeting was attended by business leaders, investors and academics including Timothy J. Roemer, former US ambassador to India, and ambassador John Negroponte, among others.

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