The Calcutta Chamber of Commerce, established in 1830 as India’s oldest Commerce & Industry Association, convened a distinguished gathering of business leaders, civil society figures, diplomats, and media representatives to discuss India’s economic growth trajectory and its journey towards a resilient, self-sufficient ‘New India’.
The event featured Dr. Bibek Debroy, Hon’ble Chairman of the Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister, Government of India, who shared insights into macro trends shaping the nation’s economy. Mr. Kishan Kumar Kejriwal, President of the Calcutta Chamber of Commerce, extended a warm welcome to all the esteemed attendees. He highlighted the Chamber’s role in promoting excellence across various domains and facilitating discussions on critical civil society issues. Amid the gathering, Dr. Bibek Debroy commended India’s impressive economic growth, showcasing an annual GDP growth rate ranging between 6-8% over the past decade. The Reserve Bank of India’s GDP projection for the fiscal year 2023-24 stood at 6.5%, underpinned by robust macroeconomic fundamentals. While India’s economic prowess was evident with its GDP crossing $3.75 trillion in 2023, Dr. Debroy acknowledged the persistence of some inflation-related concerns.
Dr. Bibek Debroy added, “In todays world there is no defination of developed countries. the world bank no longer uses the expression of Developed countries. The closest one can get to India becoming developed is to say let me look at the average per capita income of the OECD group of countries and to become developed. Indian economy is the third largest economy in terms of PPP model (Purchasing Power Parity). If we want to make projection of 2047 I have to make certain assumptions. I have to make an assumption of what the real rate of interest will be, the inflation rate and the rate of population.”
Acknowledging the role of both government spending and private investments, the discussion highlighted segments such as engineering goods, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals that have thrived. Notably, various initiatives like Bharatmala, Sagarmala, electrification, railways upgradation, and the UDAN scheme have bolstered physical infrastructure. Furthermore, the emphasis on digital infrastructure and technology-driven growth has transformed the Indian economic landscape, enhancing the potential of individuals and businesses. The event shed light on India’s promising industrial sector and the nation’s increasing appeal to global multinationals across sectors like manufacturing, infrastructure, and services.
With a focus on self-reliance and cost competitiveness, the government’s localization strategy aims to enhance India’s position in the global supply chain. Mr. M. P. Sureka, Former President of the Chamber, guided the session, emphasizing the importance of these discussions in shaping India’s economic future. The discourse delved into the potential of sectors like Healthcare, Agriculture, Education, and Infrastructure to contribute to the creation of a self-sufficient ‘New India’. In his concluding remarks, Mr. Kejriwal expressed gratitude to the attendees, underscoring the significance of collaborative efforts to drive India’s growth story forward. The event served as a platform to exchange ideas, share insights, and foster a deeper understanding of the economic landscape, ultimately contributing to the nation’s progress.