Amid the second wave of Covid-19, a look at India’s economic preparation
India is prepared to combat any risk posed by the surge in COVID-19 cases, the finance ministry had said last month
Amid the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, as many as 12 states, and major economic centers like Mumbai and Delhi, are in lockdown. This has caused a fair degree of panic amid the general public.
However, it should be recalled that India managed to come out of the economic losses in the first phase of the pandemic and this time the center has prepared well for the second wave.
In a report released last month, the Finance Ministry had said that backed by vaccinations and the experience from controlling the first wave of coronavirus pandemic, the Indian economy is well prepared to handle any downside risks posed by the second wave of COVID-19 cases.
"As the vaccination drive continuously up-scales in India and guided by the learnings of India's successful management of pandemic during its first wave, India is well armed to combat any downside risk posed by the recent surge in COVID-19 cases," the report said.
But, just a few days later, the country was stuck in a situation with shortage of vaccines and medical facilities.
This has now been under control because over the years India has worked on improving its foreign relations. The seeds sown in the past are now reaping fruits, marked as one of the positive signs in India’s preparedness in the pandemic.
The global community extended extensive support towards India as once it did for them.
Countries like the UK, US, European Union countries, Singapore, among others provided huge medical support to the country in this crucial time.
Not only in terms of medical support, but also India has continued to engage diplomatically with the foreign friendly nations in order to keep the trade going.
One of the examples of this are the recently signed India-UK Enhanced Trade Partnership and India-EU trade deal.
Besides, the dynamic Budget 2021-22 is also a positive sign of India’s preparedness at the domestic front.
Most.badly- hit companies in this time are medium and small scale industries.
Keeping this in mind, the budget had many new incentives for MSMEs like the dispute resolution scheme, the definition of small companies has been widened, LLP act decriminalization to reduce the rigor of penalties, incentives to one-person companies, and tax holidays extended for startups.
The government also proposed to reduce margin money requirements from 25 per cent to 15 per cent for startups. The Finance Minister has provided Rs 15,700 crore for the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises. The additional Government spending will also bring opportunities for business to the MSME sector.
Key steps have also been taken to promote manufacturing of import substitute items under ‘Make in India” and also lots of incentives for exports.
The domestic measures time and again and India’s strong foreign policy are keeping India going during the second wave of the pandemic.