The National, Tuesday 12th February, 2013
NEW DELHI: India’s economy can “recapture the magic” and return to high-growth of 7%-8% in the next couple of years, picking up from decade-low expansion, the finance minister said on Saturday.
Earlier last week, India’s Central Statistics Office (CSO) had projected that Asia’s third-largest economy will accelerate by 5% in the fiscal year ending in March — its slowest rate in 10 years.
“There are signs of an upturn that will take us to a high growth path,” Finance Minister P Chidambaram told reporters.
“We will climb back to a growth rate of between 6% and 7% next year and then between 7% and 8% in the year after,” he said.
“We can recapture the magic of 2004-08. The average growth was 8.5% during that period,” he said.
The finance minister disputed the CSO’s growth estimate of 5% for the current financial year as too low.
“We believe growth will be closer to 5.5%,” Chidambaram said, as he unveiled a scheme to draw more investors into India’s growing stock market.
The International Monetary Fund last week forecast India’s economy would post growth of 5.4% in the financial year ending next month.
Last year, the economy grew by 6.2% but even that rate, while enviable by anaemic Western standards, is insufficient to create the jobs India needs to provide work for its ballooning population. – AFP
An 8% growth rate is imperative to generate jobs, Chidambaram said