In his first year as Prime Minister, Narendra Modi has seized the global spotlight with global media coverage. Two authoritative weekly newspaper articles published in the past week, Time Magazine and The Economist respectively, offer two important reasons why the world needs both India and the prime minister to step up as a confident global power.
Economic Reforms (Fast and Far)
First, the outlook for the Indian economy has improved over the past year, though that’s not entirely due to Modi’s efforts. Modi’s “pro-business orientation” is unlike its predecessor. The government has taken steps to further liberalize India’s economy by, for example, opening up key sectors of the country’s economy and pushing through long standing proposals to increase foreign direct investment. On whether economic reforms have gone far and fast enough, Modi told TIME editor Nancy Gibbs, “This time last year, nothing seemed to be happening in the government. There seemed to be a complete policy paralysis. …There was no leadership. My government’s coming to power should be viewed in the contexts of the developments of the 10 years of the last government vs. 10 months of my government (Time, May 18, 2015).”
Second, Modi is a superb taskmaster. The Economists has compiled a list of 30-odd official pledges announced in the past year to outline the government’s ambitions (see left). Around half the tasks are means to be completed by the next election, 2019. The article(s) were published in Time magazine, May 18, 2015; The Economists May 23-29, 2015 (US Edition).