Economy

Indian Economy Will Grow at 6.5 Per Cent in 2017-18: Government

Indian Economy Will Grow at 6.5 Per Cent in 2017-18: Government

Data released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) showed that the agriculture sector is expected to grow at 2.1% in FY18, slower than 4.9% in the previous year, while manufacturing is likely to grow at 4.6%, compared with 7.9% a year ago.

Lower than expected tax and non-tax revenues and the implementation of goods and services tax (GST), along with other factors, are expected to drive down this fiscal's national income or gross domestic product (GDP) growth to 6.5% from 7.1% last fiscal, according to the advance estimate put out by the ministry of statistics and programme implementation (Mospi) on Friday.

As per the data, the Gross Value Added (GVA) at basic constant prices (2011-12) is anticipated to increase from Rs 111.85 lakh crore in 2016-17 to Rs 118.71 lakh crore in 2017-18. In the second quarter, the economy showed signs of revival as the GDP growth rate picked up and stood at 6.3 per cent.

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The Indian economy is forecast to grow at its slowest in four years in FY18 but is expected to pick up pace in the second half of the year.

"It is hard for GDP to cross 7 per cent this fiscal unless the base is revised downwards". The growth rate in per capita income (real terms) is estimated at 5.3 per cent during 2017-18, as against 5.7 per cent in the previous year, it added.

The country's economy is estimated to slow to a 4-year low of 6.5% in 2017-18, dragged down by sluggish manufacturing and farm sectors and the impact of rollout issues linked to the Goods & Services Tax (GST) and demonetisation on businesses but most economists said they expect the number to be revised upwards as the second half of the fiscal year is expected to fare better. A year ago this sector had growth at 5.7%. However, the fiscal deficit at the end of November touched Rs 6.12 lakh crore, or 112 per cent of the budget estimate for 2017-18, mainly because of weak GST collections and higher government spending.

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The advance estimates have, however, been compiled on the basis of actual data of the last seven months (April-October) in the fiscal 2017-18 and extrapolated for the next five months (November-March) on the basis of that.

"As such, for a broad based recovery the rural economy needs to recover and we can expect the upcoming budget to focus on alleviating some of the stress in the rural economy and concentrating on measures to augment the flow of credit in the economy", said Chakravarty.

Despite the poor estimates, the analysts are optimistic about economic growth in 2018-19. "And as the estimates are missing the RBI expectations, the central bank is likely to pause in its next policy meeting in February 2018".

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