'India has potential to become multi-trillion dollar economy'

About 55 percent of India's population is already working in the services sector but the country has to aim to bring this to 80-85 percent of the population.

New York: India has the potential to become a multi-trillion dollar economy with a per capita income of about USD 40,000 by 2050 if it manages to grow at seven percent annually for the next 30-35 years, a top World Bank official has said.

"If we can manage to grow at seven percent for next 35 years, we will not only be the second largest economy in the world at that time but we will be prosperous and people will be rich enough," World Bank Executive Director for Bangladesh, Bhutan, India and Sri Lanka Subhash Chandra Garg said.

Addressing the Indian-American community at the Indian Consulate, Garg said India has the potential to become a multi-trillion dollar economy with a per capita income of about USD 40,000 by 2050 as against the current USD 2,000 but to achieve that it will have to grow at seven percent annually for the next 30-35 years.

However, he said that achieving and sustaining a seven percent growth rate for 35 years is "very difficult" and "would require a lot of transformation in the way we manage our economy".

He underlined that India will have to transform its agriculture completely, grow its services and manufacturing sectors and give a boost to healthcare and tourism.

Garg noted that a "big challenge" will be to get people out of agriculture and use them in the manufacturing and services sectors, while also ensuring that agricultural production in the country increases.

He acknowledged that the Indian government's push on manufacturing through its 'Make in India' initiative is required to boost the sector in the country and contribute to economic growth.

"We will need to produce for us and manufacturing will be a story which requires another transformation," he said adding that a much bigger concentration and necessity will be to boost the services sector.

About 55 percent of India's population is already working in the services sector but the country has to aim to bring this to 80-85 percent of the population.

Noting the advantage of demographic dividend which India has, Garg said there is need to transform this young population into extremely productive.

"We should plan to export one-two million people every year with new skills all over the world," he said, adding that the government should pursue a policy to equip its young people with training and skills and send them abroad to provide services in various fields.

He noted that the World Bank is working very closely with the Indian government and contributing to making its vision of a strong and prosperous nation a reality.

Garg said from the smart cities initiative to the Swachh Bharat campaign, the Bank is partnering with the government in projects that are aligned with its policies.

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