New Delhi: According to the Global Infrastructure Investor Association (GIIA) and Ipsos Survey, urban Indians and global citizens strongly endorse investing in infrastructure for providing a boost to the economy and jobs.
The survey also looks at how infrastructure overhaul can be achieved and what should be prioritized – economic infrastructure or social.
Merits of investing in infrastructure
What does the infrastructure include? It includes, road, rail, air networks, utilities such as energy, water, and broadband and other communications.
83% Urban Indians and majority of global citizens across the 27 markets polled strongly believe investing in infrastructure will be vital to their country’s future economic growth. Further, 87% of urban Indians and majority of global citizens are aligned, that investing in infrastructure will create new jobs and boost the economy.
Interestingly, majority of urban Indians (73%)are OK with foreign investment in infrastructure overhaul, if it is about enhanced quality being provided. India is 2nd in the pecking order, after Peru that endorses this view. Countries most opposed and endorsing the least were, the US (30%), Australia (31%), Japan (33%) and Canada (33%).
Further, majority of Indians (77%) are also amenable to privatization in infrastructure development, if it serves the means and provides India with the infrastructure, it needs. Global citizens too are aligned on private sector investment – China (82%) and Peru (78%) endorse the most. South Africa (50%) and Japan (53%) show polarized views.
Albeit Indians want economic infrastructure (road, rail, air networks, utilities like energy and water) prioritized over social infrastructure (schools, hospitals, housing etc.).
The survey also shows that at least 4 in 5 urban Indians (85%) want infrastructure development to be included, in the COVID 19 recovery game plan of the government.
“Enhanced infrastructure bodes well for societies – leads to economies of scale, connects consumers and provides easy access to raw materials, finished goods, improves off take. Indians and global citizens espousing benefits of state-of-the-art infrastructure is not misplaced. Gives a major spur to the economy and creates jobs and improves the basic standard of living and is inclusive,” says Amit Adarkar, CEO, Ipsos India.
“Poor infrastructure puts a strain on resources, leading to cost increases and leaving out a lot of people from the ambit of facilities and utilities,” added Adarkar.
How does India stack up?
The survey shows that at least 3 in 5 Indians (59%) feel highly about India’s current infrastructure.Globally, top performers were China (90%), Saudi Arabia (80%) and Netherlands (77%).
Though, most Indians lack access to basic amenities.
“Current perception of Indians is likely to be driven by basic needs being met, without elevated expectations and about frills. As infrastructure improves, so will the expectations,” said Adarkar.