Economy

Jaitley: India has standardised itself for growth rate of 7-8%

Jaitley: India has standardised itself for growth rate of 7-8%

"It's quite a significant trend reversal", he told reporters Thursday.

Striking a note of caution, the Congress also said the rebound in economic growth is nothing but what it called the Modi governments "desperate spin to hide its luminous underperformance". "The economy now seems to have weathered the transitional challenges experienced earlier in the year and appears poised for a durable recovery, going forward", the finance minister said. Jaitley said the Goods and Services Tax (GST) started with different tax rates and they have rationalised rates on many items.

The GST was introduced on July 1 across the country.

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Reversing a downward trend of 15 consecutive months, India's economy grew 6.3% in the second quarter (July- September) backed by an acceleration in manufacturing and mining sectors but agriculture and construction, the two largest employers, continued to disappoint. "But it will remain in Q3 as firms increase production in anticipation of more sales during the festive season", chief statistician T C A Anant told journalists.

Kharif foodgrain production was down 2.8 per cent this year as against 10.7 per cent growth last year.

"We expect the growth to pick up to 7.6 per cent in the second half of this fiscal, helped by low-base effect of the second half of fiscal 2017", the ratings agency said in a statement.

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He said the government reforms to push economic growth are working can be seen from the robust growth of seven percent in manufacturing and 7.1 percent in services in the second quarter of this fiscal.

Coming close on the heels of Moody's recent upgrade of India's sovereign credit for the first time in almost 14 years, the growth buoyancy comes as a shot in the arm for the Modi Government, which has been fighting off charges that demonetisation and GST launch disrupted the Dollars 2.4-trillion economy. The survey report also projects the budgetary fiscal deficit for the current year to be slightly higher at 3.3 per cent as against the government's target of 3.2 per cent. The Q2 growth numbers place the government in a better position with respect to spending to spur economic activity.

The gross fixed capital formation, a leading indicator for investment in the country, grew 4.7% in the September quarter up from just 1.6% in the previous one.

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Lead Economist with Deloitte India Anis Chakravarty said the latest set of numbers showed improved performance of manufacturing that could have possibly been affected by implementation of the GST from July 1, 2017.