Govt will strengthen agriculture and manufacturing sectors: FM 

Sitharaman has attributed the substantial contributions to the economy from manufacturing to government policies such as the production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme and Make-in-India

January 25, 2024

Sitharaman outlined key initiatives, including the modernisation of post-harvest practices in agriculture and a focus on manufacturing in emerging industries

Despite global economic challenges, India remains the fastest-growing major economy, with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) projecting a 7% expansion in FY24

India’s Manufacturing PMI Output Index also rose to 60.5 in January from December's final figure of 57.4

Digital currency could facilitate cross-border payments, enhance transparency, and expedite the remittance payment process

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced that the government is set to prioritise enhancing the agriculture and manufacturing sectors to boost the economy. Speaking to students at Hindu College, Sitharaman outlined key initiatives, including the modernisation of post-harvest practices in agriculture and a focus on manufacturing in emerging industries like renewable energy, semiconductors, material sciences, earth sciences, and space industries.

Expressing the government’s commitment to these sectors, Sitharaman emphasised that the emphasis goes beyond budget allocations. Efforts include an enhancement of research and development and including top experts as advisors in these crucial areas. The finance minister is scheduled to present the interim budget 2024 on February 1, with general elections anticipated in April-May.

Despite global economic challenges, India remains the fastest-growing major economy, with the RBI projecting a 7% expansion in FY24. Sitharaman underscored the importance of agriculture, noting international interest in Indian food exports and value-added agricultural products. She highlighted the immense potential within the agricultural sector.

Recently, Sitharaman credited government policies such as the PLI scheme and Make-in-India for substantial contributions to the economy from the manufacturing sector. The HSBC Flash India Manufacturing PMI Output Index also reflected positive growth, rising to 60.5 in January from December’s final figure of 57.4.

However, challenges persist, including a slowdown in Indian exports due to global economic deceleration. Sitharaman highlighted the impact of higher interest rates in Western economies and geopolitical tensions in Ukraine and West Asia, threatening oil prices and inflationary pressures.

In addition, Sitharaman mentioned ongoing discussions between the government and the RBI regarding digital currency. She stated that digital currency could facilitate cross-border payments, enhance transparency, and expedite the remittance payment process.

Source: Mint

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