India Inc looks to Narendra Modi with expectations

India Inc looks to Narendra Modi with expectations

Narendra Modi is set to become India's 14th prime minister as the Bharatiya Janata Party registered a spectacular victory in the Lok Sabha elections. Here is what prominent industry representatives and analysts say on the BJP's historic victory:

Narendra Modi is set to become India's 14th prime minister as the Bharatiya Janata Party registered a spectacular victory in the Lok Sabha elections. Here is what prominent industry representatives and analysts say on the BJP's historic victory:

GV Prasad
Industry needs simple, easy-to-comply laws, says G.V. Prasad

G.V. Prasad, CEO and Managing Director of Dr Reddy's Laboratories, says it is a huge positive that there is a decisive mandate both at the Centre and Andhra Pradesh, with the Telangana Rashtra Samithi emerging in Telangana and the Telugu Desam Party emerging in coastal Andhra. He says industry needs greater ease of doing business.

"Industry needs simple, easy-to-comply laws that do not make it hard to establish a business," he says. It is important for the governments now to be more business-friendly, ensure transparent governance and focus on service to the citizens for their basic needs of education, health and sanitation. "It is time now to focus on creating jobs and overcoming the policy paralysis," he says.

- As told to E Kumar Sharma


Malvinder Singh
Clear majority will allow Modi to take difficult decisions, says Malvinder Singh

Malvinder Mohan Singh, Executive Chairman, Fortis Healthcare, said the decisive mandate in favour of Narendra Modi and the BJP will allow the government to take difficult but right decisions required to unleash growth and move the country and the economy into a higher orbit. "Clearly, there are also great expectations from the new government and I think they will have the room and the freedom to be able to deliver on their promises," he told Business Today in an email.


- As told to E Kumar Sharma


Sanjay Sinha
Expect business-like approach to financial inclusion, says Sanjay Sinha


"If we are to believe the Gujarat experience with governance, what I am expecting is a much more business-like approach to governance and to solving the problems of financial inclusion,"  says Sanjay Sinha, Managing Director of Micro-Credit Ratings International (M-Cril), a company that rates microfinance institutions (MFIs) and provides research and other services designed to promote the flow of investments into microfinance.

What that will mean for microfinance and financial inclusion is less encouragement towards some feel-good programmes that may not be quite useful like the business correspondent model that has been tried out for the past eight years and has not yet found a good business model and food security, which could hurt the exchequer.

Full Coverage: Lok Sabha Elections 2014

Instead, he expects an environment where there will be a more liberal dispensation towards mobile banking and towards encouraging the non-banking finance company-microfinance institutions to accept deposits (currently they can only offer credit). This approach, he says, is what the financial inclusion space also needs since it is only with this that greater outreach can be achieved as one would rely on technology and move beyond the banking infrastructure. Also, considering that a more business-like government results in higher economic growth, then that will have a significant inclusive result because there will be a multiplier effect.

- As told to E Kumar Sharma


Dinesh Kanabar
Dinesh Kanabar, Deputy CEO, KPMG in India:


"Irrespective of who forms the government at the Centre and who becomes the finance minister, the one thing which is clear is that the country needs to get back to the path of rapid development if it has to emerge as a economic powerhouse and be spoken of in the same breath as China.

The key to revival of economic growth is renewed investment, particularly in  infrastructure. FDI in India took a back seat thanks to flip flop in economic policies and clogging up of the approval process for large projects and confrontist tax policies. The first task of the new Government would be to deal with these three issues. We cannot have ambivalent policies in retail, an ambiguous stand on Mauritius tax treaty, a ministry which sits on large projects for environment clearance and an imposition of retrospective taxation.

While the revival of economy is always viewed as a long term process, there are indeed low hanging fruits for the new government. A strong statement of stable economic, investment and tax policies in the first budget to be presented by the new Government in the next few weeks will be the first opportunity to make a statement to the world that India is back in business. All of us would be waiting with bated breath for this whiff of fresh air!"

- As told to Arpita Mukherjee


Suneeta Reddy
Strong leadership should boost fund inflow into insurance, says Suneeta Reddy


"There is a huge mandate for the Narendra Modi government and one would expect a strong leadership and the focus will now be to getting down to doing what is right for India now," says Suneeta Reddy, Joint Managing  Director, Apollo Hospitals Group. "What is right for India is to get the investment cycle kick-started and get more foreign direct investments into India primarily into infrastructure, health and education... There is also need to encourage agriculture and manufacturing... we need to create jobs and create demand," says Reddy. She adds that the government should increase the FDI limit in areas like insurance from 26 per cent to 49 per cent.

- As told to E Kumar Sharma


Issac George
Lot of expectations are getting built, says Issac A. George


"There are evidently very high expectations from the new government and it needs to be given time as we cannot expect miracles to happen immediately," says Issac A. George, CFO, GVK Group. However, he feels industry will look for signs that Modi will send out in terms of the kind of people he assigns to various jobs and policies he would want to focus on. The Infrastructure sector, says George, is hurting the most. The sector is facing a range of problems such as the inability to raise finances and getting clearances for new project proposals. "It is also important that he looks at getting the right people at the right place, including the appointment of ministers... I think it is important that India should start looking at technocrats, people who understand the sector and be able to deliver... There is also no need for large ministries." He also feels there is a need to streamline governance. "For instance, why do we need separate ministries for power, coal and oil... all this should come under energy... if you have more ministries interaction becomes difficult."

- As told to E Kumar Sharma


Nirakar Pradhan, Chief Investment Officer, Future Generali India Life Insurance:


"The strong mandate received by the NDA is positive for both equity and debt markets. A stable and decisive government can re-engineer the Indian growth story by spearheading structural reforms and thus increasing foreign investors' interest in India.

While many positives are already factored in by markets, everyone will now watch out for actual steps taken by the government starting with the Union Budget and tax reforms. With the likelihood of the investment cycle kick-starting soon, investors could look at buying at every fall cyclical stocks such as banking, cement, capital goods and oil and gas."

- As told to Niti Kiran