13 March 2007 National

PM invites investments, says committed to fiscal discipline

New Delhi, Mar 13 (PTI) Inviting massive global investments, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today said India was committed to fiscal consolidation and providing an environment conducive to absorb these inflows, particularly in infrastructure, where over 300 billion dollars was required.

He, however, admitted that India needs more reforms in banking and financial system, so that the underlying potential of savings and resources can be mobilised and developed efficiently.

"We are committed to fiscal consolidation. We have set goals for eliminating revenue deficit. We will bring fiscal deficit to levels set in Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act," the Prime Minister told the "12th business round-table with the Government..." organised by the Economist magazine here.

He said a more enabling environment to attract global investments would be created so that resources would not be a problem for strengthening infrastructure.

"We have seen and expect to further see a massive increase in investment in both public and private, domestic and foreign in infrastructure. The institutional architecture for sustaining high level of investment in infrastructure has been put in place," Singh said.

The Prime Minister said these were through public-private partnerships, systematic bidding system, viability gap funding and other financing mechanisms and standardised approval procedures.

"We are in a new concord partnership between public and private sectors to achieve this massive target for infrastructure investment that we have set for ourselves... In the next few years," Singh said.

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OUTLOOK 13 March, 2007