The Indian economy is likely to grow at 6.75% in 2017-’18, and accelerate to 7%-7.5% in 2018-’19, the Centre said in the Economic Survey tabled in Parliament on Monday. The figure for 2017-’18 is at the lower end of the projection the government made in the Economic Survey last year, when it said the Gross Domestic Product was likely to rise 6.75%-7.5%.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley tabled the first volume of the Economic Survey for 2017-’18 in the Lok Sabha, three days ahead of the Union Budget. Monday is the opening day of the Parliament’s Budget Session.
Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian will address a press conference at 1.30 pm to elaborate on sections of the Economic Survey document.
The economic outlook for the upcoming financial year 2018-19 will be “determined by economic policy in the run-up to the next national election”, the Survey said.
“If macro-economic stability is kept under control, the ongoing reforms are stabilised, and the world economy remains buoyant as today, growth could start recovering towards its medium term economic potential of at least 8%,” it said.
The revenue collections under Goods and Services Tax are “surprisingly robust given that these are early days of such a disruptive change”, the Economic Survey said. Subramanian said the collections under GST were “doing well”, and had better “buoyancy” than previous taxes.
The GST collections slipped to their lowest in November as rates were cut on several goods to make the new single tax regime more acceptable.
“Stabilising” the GST, solving the twin-balance-sheet problem of Indian banks, privatising Air India and “staving off threats to macro-economic stability” were the items the Economic Survey noted should be on the agenda for 2018-’19.
The Economic Survey acknowledged the “revival” in the economy in the later part of 2017-’18, but said the “solid improvements were tinged with anxieties” about macro-economic stability. The fiscal and current account deficits and the inflation were all “higher than expected”, the Survey said, adding that this reflected “in part” a rise in international oil prices.
The Economic Survey projected a Consumer Price Index-based inflation to reach 3.7% for the entire year. The average inflation figure from April to December averaged 3.2%.