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Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan aims at making India global hub of manufacturing, services: Thakur

The Atmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan package is aimed at making India a global hub of manufacturing and services, Minister of State for Finance Anurag Singh Thakur said on Thursday.

The government announced the Rs 20.97 lakh crore package in May largely focussed on supply side and long-term reforms in agriculture, labour, mining and defence sector to attract private sector investment.

“Prime Minister Modi gave us a clarion call when he talked about the Aatmanirbhar Bharat, or self-reliant India. Becoming more self reliant does not mean going back to the Nehruvian era of closing our economy and import substitution.

“In fact, it means that India can be connected to the global supply chain in the same way it was but will focus on making India a global hub of manufacturing and services, and our focus primarily will be on advancing our economy and making it an export hub,” he said at a virtual conference organised by industry chamber Ficci.

India needs to adopt to the motto of ”vocal for local” as well as ”vocal for global”, he said, adding, “we need to produce locally and support the country”s demand and we need to export globally, which will help us to get into the virtuous cycle.”

Under the Aatmanirbhar Bharat package, the government has identified certain sectors that will get a boost and introduced various schemes to benefit businesses, Thakur said.

To boost consumption during the festival season, the minister said the government earlier this week announced measures of close to Rs 73,000 crore to stimulate consumer spending in an effort to rein in slowdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This is the third stimulus package since the outbreak of the pandemic.

The government had announced a Rs 1.70 lakh crore Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKP) in March to protect the poor and vulnerable from the impact of coronavirus crisis.

It was followed by the Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan package of Rs 20.97 lakh crore in May.

“These measures will act as catalysts in reviving the economy, which has already begun seeing the green shoots. Speaking of green shoots. I would now like to emphasise how the economy has started responding to the gradual unlocking,” he said.

Citing some high frequency data, he said the GST collections in September stood at Rs 95,480 crore, which was much higher than the collections in the preceding months.

India”s exports posted a 5.27 per cent yearly growth in September to USD 27.4 billion, with crucial sectors such as readymade garments, engineering goods, petroleum products, pharmaceuticals and carpets on an upswing, he said.

“So, we have seen our forex reserve jump up to a record high of USD 545 billion. Our FDI inflows have not reduced. We have received inflow of USD 74 billion in 2019-20. The trend continues in this year despite the pandemic. Between April to July, India attracted almost USD 22 billion,” he emphasised.

In September, consumption of steel, toll collections and sales of tractors and passenger vehicles surpassed pre-COVID levels seen in the month of February, he added. PTI

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