Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said on Friday that India’s Gross Domestic Product continues to grow at a faster rate than advanced economies of the world, as well as any other major economy. The finance minister held a press conference in New Delhi on the state of the economy.
“Economic reform has been top priority for the Union government since 2014 and it is a continuous process,” she said, according to the Hindustan Times. Sitharaman said globally, the growth estimate for 2019-’20 had been revised down to 3.2%. Her remarks came on the same day that credit rating agency Moody’s downgraded India’s predicted growth rate to 6.2%.
The finance minister said global trade was in a very volatile situation due to the trade war between China and the United States.
“We respect wealth creators,” Sitharaman said, echoing what Prime Minister Narendra Modi had said earlier. “That is the spirit with which the Union Budget was presented and why we invited different sectors of the economy to speak with us to understand their needs. These were in-depth consultations.”
The finance minister also announced that the government would infuse capital worth Rs 70,000 crore into public sector banks immediately. The move is expected to generate an additional lending and liquidity in the financial system to the tune of Rs 5 lakh crore, she added according to PTI.
Sitharaman said that public sector banks will ensure return of loan documents within 15 days of loan closure. “This will benefit borrowers who have mortgaged assets.”
Sitharaman said the government will directly link interest rates to repo rates. This will result in reduced EMI for housing loans, vehicle and other retail loans. “Working capital loans for industry will also become cheaper,” the minister added.
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