India wants to integrate into the global supply chain with holistic infrastructure and technology: Sumita Dawra

By focusing on cutting logistics costs, building holistic infrastructure under the Gati Shakti initiative and deploying R&D and technology, India aims to integrate into global supply chains, a senior Commerce Ministry official said.

“We have to look for ways to integrate better into global value chains. Our goal is to reduce logistics costs, build resilient supply chains and attract investment. Gati Shakti is helping to plan multimodal connectivity across India. We have a holistic approach to building infrastructure to provide last-mile connectivity in a multi-modal manner,” said Sumita Dawra, special secretary of the Department of Commerce, at a Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) event.

The 100 lakh crore Pradhan Mantri Gati Shakti National Master Plan aims to develop holistic infrastructure in India.

Dawra says integration into global supply chains offers opportunities for growth and jobs.

Emphasizing that the COVID-19 pandemic has caused massive disruption and realignment of global supply chains, Dawra points out that manufacturing and logistics are not enough to build resilient supply chains. She says to bring in resilience we also need R&D and technology.

Integrating Indian supply chains with global chains also requires strengthening domestic connectivity.

“Railways plan to move coal connectivity across ports and roads. Manufacturing localization is important to add value in domestic supply chains. Skilled labor services are needed to boost supply chains and add value,” she said.

The government has already announced the Production-Linked Incentive Scheme (PLI) in 14 sectors to boost production and exports.

“Production-related incentive schemes will help introduce cutting-edge technology and scale.

From an importer, India has now turned into an exporter of mobile phones. Today we export car parts to Europe.

Impressive sales have been recorded in sectors where the PLI system exists, such as home appliances,” she said.

The disruption in the supply chain has also impacted aircraft manufacturing.

Salil Gupte, President of Boeing India, said diversions in supply chains were observed in critical technology areas due to disruptions.

“Today it takes six to eight years to manufacture a passenger aircraft compared to 18 months earlier. Risks in supply chains must be spread more widely. Strong engineering and manufacturing partners are needed to strengthen supply chains,” Gupte said at the event.

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