Asserting that India needs an aggregate growth rate of 8 per cent per annum to create new job opportunities for the 10 million people who join the labour force each year,Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has said a conducive environment needs to be created for increased investment and savings rate,with particular attention to be paid to investment in infrastructure sectors.
Speaking at a the joint commanders conference of the armed forces here on Friday,the Prime Minister said that the nation needs to work hard to improve the environment of internal security to achieve economic progress and a steady growth rate of 8 per cent.
This is not going to be an easy task,given the international economic environment. However,it is not unattainable if we make determined efforts to increase our investment rate to 37-38 per cent as was the case three years ago, Singh said.
The PM listed the slow global economic recovery as a persistent challenge to the nation on the external front,saying the continuing uncertainty and weaknesses in the Eurozone economies have hobbled the pace of growth,including in Asian economies.
Inevitably,India too has had to deal with the fallout of slowing growth,falling exports and expanding deficits, he said.
Singh emphasised that India cannot develop or grow while its immediate neighbours struggle with poverty and underdevelopment. We will also focus on establishing greater connectivity in South Asia and our expanded neighbourhood to promote the movement of goods,services,investment and technology so that we can act as a motor of growth in this region. The Services are an inalienable arm of our diplomatic outreach and I expect them to play a full and effective role in this national endeavour, Singh said.
He listed the space and cyber domains as the ones where India needs to increase its capabilities.
In particular,there is a need to increase our capabilities in emerging areas like cyber and space,which can be the sources of new threats. We must therefore reorient our mindsets and define a long-term integrated perspective that aligns these capabilities with envisaged outcomes, he said.