FICCI president asserts that the world is conspiring for India’s victory

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India Inc’s risk appetite has not diminished as there is belief in the India story, FICCI president Sanjiv Mehta said, adding that businesses will start to invest.

Mehta, who heads the country’s largest FMCG company Hindustan Unilever, told ET that the country is at a stage where the world is conspiring to make India win.

He said the government should continue to provide a safety net to the poor in the country and look at fiscal consolidation only when the private sector capital investment starts.

“The risk appetite of Indian businesses has not diminished. Of course, there would be a bit of caution when the inflation came up and a geopolitical crisis erupted. But people believe, increasingly, in the India story,” Mehta told ET in an interview.

He presented the FICCI-McKinsey whitepaper India@100, India’s century at the industry body’s annual general meeting to finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman Friday.

The paper outlines a roadmap for what India can do to unlock opportunities to achieve sustainable and inclusive growth along key metrics by 2047. With input from over 200 companies, the paper identifies ten priority sectors for growth over the next 25 years, with a set of over 50 actions for companies and industry bodies, supported by the state and central governments, to unlock that growth. “We have said what the policy and law need to be.

At the end of the day, the government has to create an enabling environment,” he said promising support from the industry. “As the largest trade body, we also need to help in implementing these initiatives,” he said, pointing out that the industry needs to help set up innovation clusters that will allow the country to move up the innovation value chain.

Asked about monetary tightening, Mehta said: “We have to be very circumspect with the rate hikes and how much we do.

” There is always a difficult task where there is pressure on the currency, a balance of payment, and a fiscal deficit while maintaining the twin objective of inflation and growth, he said, adding that India could end the year with 7% growth.

“We have to build on that and ensure that even next year we have the same kind of resilience.”

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