Governance reforms need of the hour, says Moily

The Hindu, August 22, 2012

Union Power and Corporate Affairs Minister, Verappa Moily on Tuesday said that economic fundamentals of the Indian economy were strong, but the need of the hour was unleashing holistic reforms especially on the governance front.

“The economic fundamentals of the Indian economy are strong. It is only a question of reputation building and governance reforms that need to be put in aggressively,’’ Mr. Moily said speaking at a function on “Competition Policy Agenda in India and Emerging Challenges,’’ organised by NGO CUTS International here.

Stating that reforms came with the paradox, Mr. Moily said: “If you take a step forward, they you know you are caught, if you don’t, then you are faced with allegations of policy paralysis. It is time to adopt holistic reforms while living up to the challenges faced by the economy. Our fundamentals are strong. We are addressing the problems such as retrospective taxation or GAAR,’’ he added.

After expanding at over 8 per cent for two consecutive years, India’s economic growth fell to a nine-year low of 6.5 per cent in 2011-12.

Mr. Moily said there was a need for effective implementation of competition policy since anti-competitive forces cause hurdles to growth. “ If competition succeeds, everyone is a winner. I hope the Cabinet will approve the National Competition Policy soon,’’ he said.

More than 50 participants representing government, regulatory agencies, consumer groups, business associations, media and other stakeholders are taking part in the launch of the project which will conduct competition impact assessment in three sectors: pharmaceuticals, electricity, and the marketing of agriculture products.

The Planning Commission Member Arun Maira said, presently there is great mistrust in the public in the institutions of governance and in institutions of private sector as well. “It is this mistrust in institutions of governance that brings the view that nothing can be done,’’ he added. He said redesigning of institutions is needed to address these challenges and generating growth which is what the Planning Commission is attempting at the moment.

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