chapter  6
22 Pages

Infrastructure

ByDEVENDRA KODWANI

The Indian population is expected to touch 1.5 billion by 2050. The government and people of India aspire to grow rapidly. This presents enormous opportunities to meet the demand of people across a range of goods and services. The government of India and the governments at the state level are aware of the fact that the opportunities created by opening up of Indian econ omy can not be converted into reality in absence of good quality infrastructure services such as transport, communication networks, energy and water. On the one hand there are opportunities to meet demand for goods and services which requires good quality infrastructure support. On the other hand there is a strong need to develop road networks, generate and distribute electricity, utilize gas and petroleum resources, develop and connect ports and airports and railways for seamless transport of goods. Thus infrastructure services present an enormous scope for business over the next two to three decades. The Indian government’s recent recognition to the need for bringing up these facilities to world class standards is supported by putting in place the emphasis on development of infrastructure. Good beginning has been made in devel opment of road networks. The exploration of natural gas has expanded and the private sector has also been invited to participate in these efforts. The communications access has improved many fold and the costs have been reduced. All these are good signs for doing business in India. But a lot needs to be done at the policy level and in terms of ensuring that private domestic and foreign businesses have access to infrastructure services to make contribution to India’s economic development.