Underlining the need for structural reforms of the energy sector, Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Wednesday said it was necessary to attract investment and put the country's economy on a double-digit growth trajectory.
“While the government is adopting a number of fiscal incentives to attract investments, including in the vital energy sector, there are structural reforms required in the energy industry, to utilise those incentives,” Mr. Mukherjee said in his valedictory address at the “9th Petrotech International Oil and Gas Conference”.
“If we can put into effect some important structural policy measures, there is no reason why India cannot achieve double-digit gross domestic product (GDP) growth. However, the contribution of the energy sector is vital for achieving this economic growth,” he said.
Pointing out that India was able to come out of the global economic slowdown faster than many experts predicted, Mr. Mukherjee said: “While the world economy is yet to come out of the clutches of the global recession, it is credible that India has come out of the slowdown faster than many experts predicted in April, 2009...an analysis of various statistical trends in the economy suggests that the nation's medium and long-term prognosis is excellent.”
On the forthcoming visit of U.S. President Barack Obama, Mr. Mukherjee said: “It is an important visit and particularly in the context of the depth of our relationship. The visit of any US President is significant. Large number of areas we are expecting to have cooperation which is already in the field. The relation between India and US, the largest functional democracy in the world and oldest one itself, is significant.”