Time ripe for private sector to ramp up investments: Jaitley

KR Srivats New Delhi | Updated on January 17, 2018 Published on July 09, 2016

Finance Minister,Arun Jaitley addressing BSE members after unveiling of the commemorative postage stamp, celebrating 140 years of BSE , in New Delhi, on Saturday. Photo: Kamal Narang

Asks BSE to gear up to seize new opportunities from growing economy

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Saturday stressed that India must seize every economic opportunity coming its way and urged institutions, such as BSE, to get ready to take advantage of the openings this growing economy would offer in coming years.

Noting that India had grown well in the past few years on the strength of public investments and foreign direct investments, Jaitley also felt that time was ripe for private sector to ramp up investments and ride on the signs of improved urban demand.

Also, since rain gods appear to be kinder this year, there would be signs of increased rural demand. All these would lead to opportunities for private sector itself and entail lot more activities for BSE, Jaitley said after releasing a commemorative postage stamp on 140 years of existence of BSE, earlier known as Bombay Stock Exchange.

“There is a crying necessity that nothing must be left unturned today. No opportunity must be lost because for almost long period before that we had lost several opportunities”, he said, adding that “having adopted tighter regulatory and economic policies in the past, a lot of economic opportunities that would have come India’s way had missed us.”

“As long as I can look through the tunnel, for a reasonably long period of time, we are going to need a lot of investments — infrastructure deficit and industrialisation deficit that exists has to be covered up for. The starting point for all this is investments and resource-raising”, he said, adding that BSE could play a critical role in resource raising.

Returns on savings

Noting that India had a “peculiar characteristic” of high percentage of domestic savings, Jaitley raised the burning question on the suitable instrument for parking of such savings.

“Now, whether domestic savings are to be only utilised in such instruments which give higher return and, therefore, create an interest regime that is extremely costly and makes the economy sluggish, or higher returns are to be got from such instruments, such as shares and bonds (lot of them have an element of secured investment in them which can give to people very respectable return itself)”, Jaitley wondered.

Limited liability

The Finance Minister also underscored the need to preserve the concept of limited liability and notion of a company having distinct identity vis-à-vis shareholders.

“I wonder if this concept globally had not been created some centuries ago, whether economic transformation of the world would have taken place. It is important that even today this principle is upheld because raising capital and generating wealth and using that wealth to enrich society is based on this premise. We occasionally dilute this distinction when fraudulent activity takes place”.

BSE View

Speaking on the occasion, Sudhakar Rao, Chairman, BSE Ltd, said that BSE—the world’s largest bourse by the number of companies listed - was now ready to launch its commodities derivatives business and sought SEBI approval for commencement of the same.

Also, BSE is committed to establish an international stock exchange and international clearing corporation in GIFT city in Gujarat, Rao added.

BSE already has in-principle approval from market regulator SEBI for launch of an initial public offering.

Ashish Chauhan, Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer, BSE Ltd said that continued operation of BSE for 140 years is a testimony to the strength of Indian entrepreneurship.

“This tells us the story of wealth creation. In the last 140 years of existence, BSE has helped India create wealth of over ₹ 104 lakh crore”, Chauhan said.

He also highlighted that BSE had become more hi-tech in the last few years and evolved into a multi-product exchange.

The Asia’s oldest bourse was now offering bouquet of products including equities, equity derivatives, currency derivatives, mutual funds, interest rate futures, gold bonds etc.

Lauding the efforts of Jaitley and his team for providing an enabling environment, Chauhan said that revival of BSE truly started under “your fair and transparent administration”.

“BSE will remain indebted to you for ever for creating policies that provided level playing field for Indian stock exchanges after a long time”, Chauhan said.

Chauhan also said that BSE would for an entire year from now celebrate “140 years of its existence”.

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Published on July 09, 2016
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