Jun 1: The Chairman of the Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister; Dr. Bibek Debroi has said that the provisional Estimates of Annual National Income, 2017-18 & Fourth Quarter (Q4) Estimates of National Income, (Jan-Mar 2018) are a reflection of the fact that the momentum in growth trajectory continues.
The Fourth quarter (Q4) Jan 2018 – Mar 2018 estimate of Gross Domestic Product released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO), Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation estimates the GDP to grow at 7.7 percent. Q4 registered the strongest quarterly growth last financial year indicating a broader continuity in growth acceleration trends. As per CSO, “Real GDP or GDP at constant prices has reached Rs 34.77 lakh crore in Q4 as against Rs 32.27 Lakh crore in Q4 2016-17.
The CSO has also released the provisional estimates of national income for the full financial year 2017-18. The GDP at the constant prices is estimated to grow at 6.7 percent for the financial year 2017-18. The Real GVA, i.e. GVA at basic constant prices (2011-12) has been estimated at 119.76 for the year 2017-18 showing a growth rate of 6.5 percent over revised estimate of GVA for the year 2016-17 of Rs 112.48 Lakh Crore.
Chairman of EAC to PM, Dr. Bibek Debroy said that the key sectors of the economy are experiencing steady growth. The improved growth numbers are due to the government’s consistent effort in implementing bold structural reforms. Goods and Services Tax, Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, Bank recapitalization, 100% village electrification, repealing archaic laws, simplifying doing business etc. have all contributed positively towards growth.
He further stated that sound macroeconomic management by the government is boosting growth and investment in India. This combined with IMDs prediction of normal monsoon is likely to further boost consumer demand particularly rural demand in the economy. The other key economic indicators like IIP, PMI, etc. are also showing steady growth. The IIP (Q-o-Q % change) grew at 5.23 percent in quarter ending in March 2018 as compared to 4.32 percent in quarter ending in December 2017.
Dr Debroy also said that the government has done well in keeping inflation and fiscal deficit under check. The retail price inflation has remained close to 3.6 percent during 2017-18. The RBI, in its Monetary Policy Report of April, projects the CPI to rise form 4.4 percent to 5.1 percent in the first quarter of 2018-19, on the back of crude oil prices shooting up. The inflation concern is genuine; however, a normal monsoon combined with a prudent fiscal policy being followed by the government would help keep the overall inflation under control.