In the last two and a half years the total foreign direct investment that flowed into the country was a record $ 130 billion. India is the fastest growing major economy in the world and is seen as the world's growth engine. The country has risen sharply in ranks when it comes to global competitive index, ease of doing business, global innovation index and logistics performance index. In two years since the launch of 'Make in India' initiative the country has become the 6th largest manufacturing country in the world up from its earlier rank of 9. India will soon emerge as the largest consumption market in the world. These were the facts that Prime Minister Narendra Modi used to sell India's attractiveness as an investment destination to the hundreds of delegates at Vibrant Gujarat, many of whom were from the 12 partner countries.
He was inaugurating the eight edition of the biennial global summit. He used the opportunity to explain his government's priority -- deliver a clean governance that will create better job opportunities, generate higher income thereby improving their purchasing power and hence their quality of life. To achieve this he is banking on large scale investment. "My government is strongly committed to continuing the reforms. We have the highest emphasis on ease of doing business, he said in front of an array of business leaders such as Ratan Tata, Mukesh Ambani, Gautam Adani, Cisco's John Chambers, Ajay Piramal, Uday Kotak, Anand Mahindra among others.
He said the government was implementing some historic initiatives such as GST, New IPR regime, New Arbitration process and measures to tackle insolvency and bankruptcy. "We are motivated to further simplify our processes to become the easiest place to do business," he said.
He also said that there has been substantial improvement in key economic performance indicators such as GDP growth, inflation, fiscal deficit and current account deficit. India, he added, was a bright spot in the global economy. He reminded the audience of India's strength, the three Ds - democracy, demography and demand.
Corporate leaders speaking at the event praised the government's performance and Modi's leadership. Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and managing director, Reliance Industries said that Modi executes whatever he envisages. No other leader has changed the mindset of so many people in such a short time, he said adding digitisation will make India one of the strongest countries in the world. He also pointed out that Reliance Industries's cumulative investment in Gujarat was Rs 2,40,000 crore and this was the highest investment made by any Indian company in a single state. (Reliance Industries owns Network 18, publisher of Forbes India.
Ratan Tata who had in an earlier edition of Vibrant Gujarat famously said 'If you are not in Gujarat, you are stupid' said that he has since been proved right. Gujarat, he added, will usher in the new India to the world. Gautam Adani, chairman, Adani group announced a Rs 49000 crore investment in the state.
The inaugural session was followed by a global CEO conclave where top Indian and global CEOs participated.