Day 46 – Q 4.Government can only be an enabler of change in a sector. Do you agree? In this light, critically evaluate the turn that India’ public policy discourse has taken over the last few years.
4. Government can only be an enabler of change in a sector. Do you agree? In this light, critically evaluate the turn that India’ public policy discourse has taken over the last few years.
किसी भी क्षेत्र में सरकार केवल एक परिवर्तन का साधन हो सकती है। क्या आप सहमत हैं? इस प्रकाश में, पिछले कुछ वर्षों में भारत की सार्वजनिक नीति प्रवचन के बदलते स्वरुप का समालोचनात्मक मूल्यांकन करें।
In its seventh decade of independence, India stands on the cusp of major change: a transformation that could lead to unprecedented economic growth paired with radical improvements in the nation’s public policy discourse. To support progress in such an endeavour, the government is incorporating multiple changes for better digital infrastructure, acting as an enabler in the various sectors.
- The government is playing the role of an enabler to create an environment that will provide for transparent, non-predatory and fair pricing for different sectors to increase their revenue.
- This is being achieved by refraining from changing the rules and adhering to contractual obligations such as those of long-term off take agreements, apart from holding mutual consultations in a transparent manner for any changes in the contracts.
- Consistency and continuity in government policies with proper regulation can create a predictable market for industries, who then can build large projects. This results from efforts of government to act as an enabler for businesses rather than stifle the energy of growing industries.
- Recently, India was ranked 63rd position in World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business 2020 report which is a great improvement from earlier ranking which has helped in improving performance in many sectors and is a result of consistent efforts since the past few years.
- An additional benefit of improving ease of doing business in India could take the form of greater confidence in India on the part of multinational companies, which would translate into larger flows of foreign direct investment and know-how into India, two essential ingredients for growth and innovation.
- The private sector has a major opportunity to help India improve its performance in each industry. Companies that can craft solutions to support such performance improvement can reap benefits including entry into new markets, increased revenues, and a much stronger market position than that of their competitors.
- The Indian policy framework today is to empower the states more and to decentralize decision making for funding, so we will see dynamic and vibrant states almost competing with each other for resources and being much more open to investment.
The fundamental regulatory or policy transformations over the past few years under the current government include:
- The passage of the goods-and-services tax, which is going to create an integrated market in India for the first time. It’s a value-added tax regime, which is going to dramatically reduce all of the inefficiencies and barriers within the internal market.
- Next is the financial infrastructure,i.e, the Jan-Dhan Yojana, which has enabled 100 million-plus bank accounts enabled by mobile phones. The provision of benefits transfer directly to people’s bank accounts, using their mobile phone and the Aadhaar is a unique platform—there is no other country in the world that has this scale of mobile-driven bank accounts with the ability to transfer money and services directly to the beneficiary without all of the leakages that have plagued the sector for many, many years.
- The launch of Digital India by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, with the objective of connecting rural areas with high-speed Internet networks and improving digital literacy, the digital revolution has already started happening in India. This vision of the digital India programme presented by the central government has resulted in inclusive growth in areas of electronic services, products, manufacturing, and job opportunities.
- India took a bold and innovative step in creating Invest India, a one stop shop to promote foreign direct investment, which has helped streamline some administrative enablers. However, as the 2018 Global Competition Review shows, other countries are following suit and easing the regulatory framework for domestic investors
- Platforms like UPI-integration and products like the BHIM app is a commendable step as each sector – be it education, healthcare, infrastructure and more – benefits from being associated with a rising digital economy, which helps the overall economy of India to benefit from the digital revolution.
The country also saw improvement in public sector performance and e-governance structure. The introduction of a new insolvency law has helped make the legal system more efficient at settling disputes, which no doubt will be viewed positively by both foreign and domestic investors. Improved monetary policy framework and easing access to finance conditions has also delivered a strong performance on the SME financing indicator, where India ranks 16th.
Despite unfavorable global economic conditions, policy-makers in India must continue to put a premium on prudent macroeconomic management, including maintaining fiscal and monetary discipline. Furthermore, policies that have helped improve its competitiveness must be maintained. This includes reforms that will help inject further dynamism into the administrative apparatus.