Indian labour laws needs relaxation to attract investment: Official

New Delhi, Sep 23 (IANS) Labour laws in the country needs to be “relaxed” to encourage higher investment in labour intensive sectors of the industry, an official said here.

“We acknowledge that the labour laws need to be relaxed to encourage higher industry investments in labour intensive manufacturing plants,” Ajay Shankar, chairman of the expert committee on legislation constituted by the department of investment policy and promotion, said here at the CII Manufacturing Excellence Conclave.

He said on account of outdated labour laws, the industry is reluctant to set up large plants employing huge workforce to the tune of 50,000-100,000 workers.

“With easing of regulations and approval processes, setting up of 5 labour courts in place of 44 labour laws, support to start-ups, and other pro industry policy measures more investment is expected in labour intensive sectors wherein we have been lagging behind,” he said.

Shankar said it is estimated that 100 million manufacturing jobs will move out of China due to declining profitability to border countries.

“We need to build a strategy and create a robust eco system so as to capture at least 50 percent of these jobs. I believe we are well on track to achieve our target of generating 100 million jobs by 2022,” he said.

Shankar expressed confidence that India will surpass China in the manufacturing sector in the near future.

He said the industrial sector’s contribution to the country’s GDP will rise to 14 percent can be made possible if cost advantage – encompassing wage, productivity and quality benefits – can be consolidated and latest technologies and innovation are adopted.

“We are already the third or fourth largest market for various products, but need to concentrate more on creating value for the domestic as well as the global markets. It is the only way to generate employment for the large pool of young people joining the labour force every year,” he added.

Speaking over the Make In India campaign, the official said it is an “urgent necessity for India in the present scenario”.

“As we are set to be the world’s most populous country by 2028, our social stability would depend on the success of Make in India considering its potential to generate jobs, especially those at the bottom of the pyramid,” he added.

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