Larsen & Toubro Chairman AM Naik has said that the government's ambitious Make in India initiative has been unable to create enough jobs since companies still prefer to import goods instead of manufacturing locally. He added that the Make in India programme has to do a lot more.
"The Prime Minister's Make in India programme, which is spoken about a lot, has to do a lot more. We are exporting jobs now instead of exporting goods," he said in an interview. He added that India needs to find answers as to why most Indian companies are keen to import rather than manufacture here. He said that India allows imports because it often comes with credit facility, further adding that that high imports are because Indian companies do not have enough financing options available.
The L&T Chairman has said that job creation, especially in the manufacturing sector, has not been able to keep pace with the supply of skilled labour.
"We need at least an economy equivalent to China's since our population is almost the same. Otherwise, there is always going to be a shortage of jobs and unless the economy grows like it did in China, which means at least 12-13% growth every year, this disparity will remain," he said.
Naik spoke about the trade war between US and China and said that unlike India, several countries such as Vietnam and Thailand have benefitted from Trump's step away from China. "What did India do? If I was implementing this, I would have created a separate ministry on how to bring foreign investment and export-oriented business to India," he said.
The L&T Chairman also said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi needs to implement his Gujarat model at a national level.