Besides GST reform—which will have a positive impact on India’s fiscal position and reduce the friction costs of state tariffs—the two big new laws I would like to see are the Land Acquisition Bill, passed and fully and fairly implemented, and a new Labour Law.
The Land Bill will allow factories and infrastructure projects to go ahead faster. At the moment, there is a complex process that most parties in such a land transaction are not happy with.
Besides the Land Bill, the other big impediments to growth and expansion are the very restrictive labour laws; it is very hard to fire people and labour regulations are both complex and inflexible. This is a harder thing to change, as there are many interests active in keeping the status quo.
If we see these two laws implemented, we can be more certain about a positive future for India. India has the largest and youngest labor force in the world and a cheap one, especially compared to China, and which also speaks ‘OK English’. Which company in the world would then not want to have some of its operations there?
But if India cannot achieve these two [goals], I think it will have to wait longer for the future that has been promised to them so many times by their politicians. But the future belongs to those with a young and energetic population: India has that more than anywhere else. Few other countries do.