Bikky Khosla | 24 Nov, 2020
its economic reform agenda, the government will take
up more measures in days ahead, the Finance Minister said on Monday at a conference in New Delhi. In her speech, the minister added that Prime
Minister Modi has not lost the opportunity for deep reforms, even during the Coronavirus
crisis. In a similar tone, a top government official last week had viewed that
the Centre wants to convert this crisis into an opportunity. All this
global rating agency, meanwhile, is of the opinion that the Centre's reform
agenda in response to the Coronavirus pandemic shock has the potential to raise
India's medium-term growth rate. No doubt, however, measures to support
investment and boost productivity seem imperative at this moment for reviving
the economy. In a bid to counter the effects of COVID-19, the Centre has
continued its support in the form of economic stimulus, but now
it seems is the time to accelerate reforms.
In terms of labour and education, measures like
consolidation of 29 labour legislations into four codes and the New Education
Policy – are encouraging, but continued push in this direction is a must.
Similarly in farm sector, the recent decision of deregulating farm-to-market
supply chains is a bold step, but experts now call for a new green revolution
to transform the sector. Again, higher fiscal spending for capital infrastructure
can bring forth a long-term solution to both employment and output generation.
As far as economic outlook is concerned, a
recent survey reflects optimism, however. About 77 percent of nearly
1,700 respondents of the nationwide survey are optimistic of an economic
recovery. While 22 percent of the respondents said they expect a revival in the
next three to six months, 28 percent felt it could take anywhere between six
months to a year. These findings are encouraging, and to convert the
COVID crisis into an opportunity, we must now push ahead with tough reforms.
I invite your opinions.