New Delhi [India]: In the latest State of the Union Address, US President Joe Biden announced a slew of reforms and measures with a promise to improve the lives of millions of Americans.
The economic vision as envisaged by the Biden administration in his speech encapsulated many diverse aspects ranging from the need to ‘Make in America’, jobs creation for millions of Americans, safe drinking water, access to affordable health facilities, double America’s clean energy production in solar and wind, and so on.
While the US is trying to build a renewed economic vision, the Indian Government under Prime Minister Narendra Modi has already been treading this economic journey for the past 8 years now. India is already on the path of promoting Ease of Doing Business, reducing compliance burden and minimising government interference.
Biden promised, “Every American has clean water to drink at home and at school, provide affordable high-speed internet for every American–urban, suburban, rural, and tribal community.”
In India, launched with the aim of ‘Har Ghar Jal’, the Jal Jeevan Mission has brought about a huge difference in the lives of the people. Nearly six crore rural households have been provided tap water connections despite the constraints imposed by the pandemic.
In India, the biggest projects to modernise digital and physical infrastructure got unprecedented momentum in the Corona times itself. More than 6 lakh villages in the country are connected with optical fibre. An investment of USD 1.3 trillion is being made, especially on connectivity infrastructure.
The cost of internet connectivity and the price of smartphones in India today are among the cheapest in the world. India is also working with great pace on 5G mobile connectivity, which will open doors to new opportunities. India’s efforts on semiconductors will significantly benefit our start-up ecosystem.
Biden’s speech laid emphasis on the need to “Invest in America. Educate Americans. Grow the workforce. Build the economy from the bottom up and the middle out, not from the top down. Buy American: buy American products to support American jobs.”
He even said that “We will buy American to make sure everything from the deck of an aircraft carrier to the steel on highway guardrails is made in America.
The rebirth of pride comes from stamping products ‘Made In America’ and the revitalisation of American manufacturing.” India is already moving ahead with the spirit of Make in India, Make for the world.
Along with telecom, insurance, defence, aerospace, there are limitless possibilities offered by India in this regard. While following the path of self-reliance, India’s focus is not only on easing the processes but also on incentivising investment and production. With this approach, today, Production-Linked Incentive schemes worth USD 26 billion have been implemented in 14 sectors. The USD 10 billion incentive plan to roll out the fab, chip and display industry is a testament to our commitment to making the global supply chain smooth.
Biden reiterated, “Let’s provide investments and tax credits to weatherise your homes and businesses to be energy efficient and you get a tax credit, double America’s clean energy production in solar, wind, and so much more, lower the price of electric vehicles.” Climate change is a major challenge confronting the whole world at present. India has emerged as a responsible global voice on the subject.
Today, India is at number four in the world in installed renewable energy capacity. India’s non-fossil fuel energy has increased by more than 25pc in the last 7 years and now it has reached 40 pc of our energy mix. Passengers numbering more than the entire population of the world, travel by Indian Railways every year. This huge railway system has set itself a target of making itself ‘Net Zero’ by 2030.
This initiative alone will lead to a reduction of 60 million tonnes of emissions annually. Similarly, our massive LED bulb campaign is reducing emissions by 40 million tonnes annually. Along with this, India has also given institutional solutions to cooperate with the world at the international level.
As a revolutionary step in solar power, India initiated the International Solar Alliance. We have created a Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure for climate adaptation. This is a sensitive and vital initiative to save crores of lives. India has also taken the initiative of “Green Grid Initiative: One Sun, One World, One Grid” with the global community.
Biden also said, “If we want to go forward, not backward, we must protect access to health care. Preserve a woman’s right to choose. And let’s continue to advance maternal health care in America.” Health facilities are now easily accessible to the common people because of the responsive policies of the government.
In India, more than 80,000 health and wellness centres and crores of Ayushman Bharat cards have helped the poor immensely in getting treatment. The government has reduced the cost of treatment by providing affordable medicines through more than 8,000 Jan Aushadhi Kendras. ‘Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission’ is an important step in providing easy and accessible health services.
Biden in his speech announced, “We’re going to have an infrastructure decade. We’ll create good jobs for millions of Americans, modernising roads, airports, ports, and waterways all across America”.
India has also launched the Gati Shakti National Master Plan to bring every stakeholder on the same platform for promoting development. Under this National Master Plan, work will be done on infrastructure planning, development and implementation in an integrated manner.
This will give a new impetus to seamless connectivity and movement of Goods, People and Services. Biden called for “increasing the productive capacity of our economy for building a better America.” He highlighted the need to boost the startup culture to bring new-age innovations in the world. Since 2016, more than 60,000 new start-ups have been established in 56 different sectors in India and more than six lakh jobs have been created by these start-ups.