Industry must trust govt: Finance Minister

Our Bureau Kolkata | Updated on April 21, 2021

Nirmala Sitharaman addressing an MCCI event , in Kolkata   -  Swapan Mahapatra

‘A progressive approach to governance and reforms has helped in recovery’

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday said that the industry needs to “trust” the government “during trying times like these”.

“Businesses should be trusted and we need to have confidence in them. Similarly, the industry should have confidence and mutual trust in the government. They should know that we are accessible and approachable,” Sitharaman said while interacting with Kolkata-based industrialists during an MCCI event here.

The Minister has been meeting industry captains and delegations of different chambers of commerce here, assuring them of necessary measures and allaying fears about a possible nationwide lockdown.

“The Government is not in favour of an all across lockdown. We are focussed on micro-containment zones; States need to think of it, too. We are also working with the States to handle the situation as such lockdowns will impact migrant workers,” she said.

Progressive approach

Sitharaman said a “progressive approach” to governance, “coupled with reforms”, has helped in “economic growth recovery” including “improvement of credit lines”.

Outcomes also include a huge push in direct bank transfer of benefits, a push for welfare schemes like MNREGA among others.

“The economy needs stimulus, economic packages and reforms”, she said adding that the Reserve Bank of India and the Centre have had “the best (of) cordial relations ever”, with both working in tandem.

“At the time of the second wave, look at the steps we have taken. Revival will continue to happen. Sentiments cannot fall so rapidly,” the Finance Minister added.

Urging industry captains to not blindly believe in everything that is being circulated on social media, Sitharaman said: “There could be a lot of campaigning. I would urge you to spend a minute before you believe it. These are challenging times. Disinformation cannot lead to distrust and mistrust between government and industry.”

The Centre is also ensuring “uninterrupted supply of vaccines”. Advance payments have been made to Serum Institute and Bharat Biotech for supply of vaccines till July, she added.

On Inflation

According to Sitharaman, inflation is expected to dip “as new crops come in”. An empowered group of ministers is “constantly monitoring” the food inflation and edible oil situation in the country.

“As new crops come in, we expect inflation to come down,” she said on the sidelines of the programme.

Published on April 20, 2021

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