Chidambaram assures more steps to revive growth

Last Updated: Thu, Feb 07, 2013 10:40 hrs

New Delhi, Feb 7 (IANS) Finance Minister P. Chidambaram Thursday said the government would take more appropriate steps to revive economic growth even as the statistical office lowered the GDP growth forecast to 5 percent, the worst in a decade.

"The CSO's growth estimate, no doubt, is below what we in the finance ministry had expected it to be," Chidambaram said while reacting to the data released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) here.

"We are keeping a watch on the situation. We have taken and will continue to take appropriate measures to revive growth," the finance minister said in a statement.

In the advance estimate of national income, the CSO drastically cut the gross domestic product (GDP) growth forecast to 5 percent for the year ending March 31, 2013, as compared to 6.2 percent in the previous year.

This will be the worst performance of the Indian economy since 2002-03 when the growth was recorded at 4 percent.

Chidambaram hoped that the actual growth would be higher than the projection helped by the economic reform measures taken by the government.

"This projection is based on extrapolation of numbers till November 2012. Since then, leading indicators have turned up, suggesting some hope that we will end the year on a better note. Also, sectors such as trade and transport, which are related to industry, would also tend to get revised upwards, if growth outcomes are better," he said.

Chairman of the Prime Minister's Economic Advisory Council C. Rangarajan also expressed similar view, although terming the figure "disappointing".

"It can be revised upward," Rangarajan said.

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