Modi's 'Make in India' pitch to 500 top global CEOs

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Narendra Modi
New Delhi, Sep 23: Some 500 top chief executives from across the globe are set to convene at the Vigyan Bhavan convention centre here on Thursday to log in to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's "Make in India" campaign at an event reminiscent of the Vibrant Gujarat Summit when he was the state's chief minister, but on a much grander scale.

From top honchos of large Indian conglomerates like the House of Tatas, the two Reliance Groups and the Aditya Vikram Birla empire to chief executives of some of the best-known global companies like Mercedes, Airbus, Vodafone, Honda and Samsung have confirmed their attendance at the event where Modi will make a strong pitch for investments.

This apart, the assembled corporate guests will also get to meet and interact with some ministers in the prime minister's council, holding key portfolios in areas like finance, commerce, industry and infrastructure, officials said.

At Thursday's event, the prime minister will also launch a "Make in India" portal, which among other issues, will offer a platform to address queries from potential investors by a panel of top officials, including those that are more complex in nature.

Besides this help desk, ideas will also be invited with provision to act upon them.

Simultaneouisly, invitations from the government will also go out to 3,000 of the world's top companies to consider India for their investments for which the Indian missions will be roped in, officials said.

"The idea was floated by the prime minister on Aug 15. It is taking shape now. The basic objective is to make India a manufacturing hub with a sustainable long-term growth of 10 percent. Job creation is also a priority," a senior commerce ministry official said.

"The campaign also has an implementation angle to it: Specific reforms in areas like tax policies and de-regulation will be identified and set in motion. The states will also be co-opted into this initiative for seamless flow of investments," the official added.

This is similar to Modi's "Vibrant Gujarat" summits when he was chief minister. During these summits, some 40 top industrialists Indian would share the stage with him, make short speeches and then sign pacts for projects worth tens of billions of dollars.

In his maiden Independence Day speech on Aug 15, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had sought to reach out to global investors, asking them to come and manufacture goods in India, while also calling for zero-defect products with zero-effect on environment.

"I tell the world, 'Make in India'," Modi said in his maiden address from the Red Fort. "Sell anywhere but manufacture here. We have the skill and talent for it," he had said, adding ways must be found to curb imports and instead export Indian goods to the world.

"From electrical to electronics to, come make in India. From chemicals to pharma, come make in India, from auto to value-addition, come make in India. Paper or plastic, come make in India. Satellites or submarines, come make in India," he had said.

"We in India have the strength. I extend the invitation to you."

IANS

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