Lunch with the FT: Raghuram Rajan –

IMF Chief Economist Raghuram Rajan at the Worl...

IMF Chief Economist Raghuram Rajan at the World Economic Outlook press conference.WEO Press Conference, Washington DC, IMF Headquarters (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is top of the FT’s most-read list – it’s a thoroughly recommended interview of the  governor of India’s central bank. Check it out!

via Lunch with the FT: Raghuram Rajan –

As I reflected on the excellent article my mind drifted to India Prime Minister Mondi’s call for more inward investment, earlier this week. Soon my mind wandered to China. I thought of the lightening fast response of China’s government to the 2008 financial crash. Next, I was reflecting on my extended trip to India, earlier this year. India is like the famous glass, either half-full or half-empty, depending upon viewpoint. As a passionate advocate of democracy, I really admire India, which is by far, the world’s largest democracy. Power in India is widely devolved, with many checks and balances, plus vested interests, of course.

Much as I love India, I fear that under the leadership of Prime Minister Mondi and Governot Rajan that radical reform will be too slow. Much of my earlier career has been involved in delivering strategic change, including in the government departments and international agencies. I have also worked extensively in India.

I fear that Raghuram Rajan, former Chief Economist of the IMF, will not be given the power to dole out bitter IMF medicine to India.

For me, a radical reform agenda for India would include opening the economy to foreign investment, outsourcing the public sector and drastically increasing infrastructure investment.

All over India in major cities, one can see the extension of the underground railways – this is often financed by bilat loans from Japan – this is an important start.

Any thoughts on overcoming India’s challenges?



One response

  1. Dr Alf has put his finger on India,s problem,which is that decision making is too slow,too inefficient and too devolved.

    Raghuram Rajam may be amongst one of the world’s “top 100 thinkers” but India needs to bring its mental processes vis a vis Governanance and attitudes to woman into the 21st century and this man is unlikely to get the inward investment the country needs with the levels of corruption and inefficiency which exist.

    India needs to learn from Singapore which is now selling its brand of governance to other countries.
    Letting its brightest students go to America to work helps Silicon Valley,the US economy and Google but it does not help India.

    These people need to be induced to return or not leave in the first place.

    Above all the operational tempo of decision making needs to be upped after the “thinking ” is done.
    Elegant thought without action is a useful exercise for arcane philosophical discussion in academia but for a country with gross inequality and an inability to feed all its people India needs to look at China if it wants to learn how to get things done.

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