There could have been better stimuli for growth: Adi Godrej, Chairman, Godrej Group

"If some of the announcements are properly implemented, it will have a very strong impact on long-term growth."

BCCL
Adi Godrej believes there were some good announcements for rural development.
We could have increased the growth rate this year itself with the right kind of stimuli, Adi Godrej, Chairman, Godrej Group, said in a conversation with ET Now.

Edited excerpts:

ET Now: How you are reading into Nirmala Sitharaman's maiden budget. What have been some of your key takeaways?


Adi Godrej: I think some announcements will be good for the long term. There are many good steps they are planning to take, but I do not see much of an effect on the year’s GDP growth; which is badly needed. I think for some sectors the announcements are good. For example, one of our businesses is in real estate development -- Godrej Properties. There are some very good announcements for the real estate business and for rural developmental incomes, which will help some of our companies like Godrej Consumer Products and Godrej Agrovet. So, I see many bright spots.

ET Now: Before the budget, the narrative was to boost private investment and how this budget could kick start animal spirits. One point that has been made is that the Rs 70,000 crore plan to recapitalise public sector banks would help push in that direction -- pressure on NBFCs perhaps eased. Do you think this is enough considering the investment slump we are in?

Adi Godrej: No, not enough overall. But I think, if some of the announcements are properly implemented, it will have a very strong impact on long-term growth.
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ET Now: This was a budget for Bharat. At least, that is what expectations were being pinned on. There have been steps with respect to rural India -- a lot of push in connectivity of villages, more homes being built, power and fuel connections. Do you think on that front there has been enough initiatives?

Adi Godrej: Yes, as I mentioned, for rural development there are some good announcements. There are some good ones for other areas of business, too. The goal set is 7 per cent growth in this financial year, and 8 per cent over the five-year period. I think both of these can be achieved.

ET Now: There is talk that this budget had an opportunity for bold reforms, but perhaps took incremental steps instead. Is that the view for the broader picture considering this is the first budget being presented after a massive mandate? Could more have been done?

Adi Godrej: Yes, I think there could have been better stimuli for growth this year. We could have increased the growth rate this year itself with the right kind of stimuli.
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ET Now: All in all, how much would you rate this budget out of 10?

Godrej: I do not like to give ratings.
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ET Now: We had talked about consumption, which is a space that was slowing down. What would you like to see going forward on the consumption front? And when can we see a complete pickup in the consumption trend?

Adi Godrej: I think consumption will grow if GDP growth rate improves…

ET Now: In the press conference after the budget, the FM spoke about a focus on rural consumption and how infrastructure spending by the government would help push it. Do you think this cycle is going to work fast enough to turn this slump around?

Adi Godrej: Hopefully. I think the rural economy will pick up a little faster than the urban economy.
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