K.T. Rama Rao seeks freedom for States to seek funds

Information Technology and Industries Minister K. T. Rama Rao with CEO of Coca Cola James Quincey at Davos.

Information Technology and Industries Minister K. T. Rama Rao with CEO of Coca Cola James Quincey at Davos.  

State governments should be allowed to deal directly with funding agencies, says IT Minister

IT and Industries Minister, K T Rama Rao has suggested that the Central government should remove hurdles for States to directly deal with international and national funding agencies for inviting investments for its projects.

KTR argued that there was no substitute for more investment in infrastructure and for it to happen, the Government of India should take some bold steps like giving more capital access to States by relaxing the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (FRBM) limits and engage directly with funding agencies. The Department of Economic Affairs should ensure this for States like Telangana at least, he said.

The Minister, who participated in a discussion along with industry leaders, policy makers and officials from India, on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos on Thursday, argued for utilising the money from the Provident Fund lying idle with the banks.

“We are using social security funds from Canada and Norway but not our own Provident Fund lying with the banks for meagre interest rate. The Central government needs to convince people and use it for boosting the economy,” he felt.

About ₹18 lakh crore of pensions, Provident Fund and other small savings are lying with the banks in the country and these funds can be put to use like what Canada does across the globe, he said.

Citing Telangana government’s initiatives in creating massive Pharma city and mega textile parks, KTR said Centre should bring out new policies on the national industrial and textile parks. Unless this is done, India cannot compete with countries like Vietnam and other South Asian economies that have taken the lead in these sectors.

The IT Minister argued not only for lowering the cost of doing business but also improving the quality of doing business for the existing ones as well as to attract new entrants.

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Printable version | Jul 11, 2020 4:51:35 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/kt-rama-rao-seeks-freedom-for-states-to-seek-funds/article30637365.ece

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