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India's GDP data comes under cloud

DC | PAWAN BALI
Published Feb 28, 2015, 2:35 pm IST
Updated Mar 29, 2019, 5:23 pm IST
India’s GDP will grow by 8.5 per cent in 2015-16

New Delhi: Reviving the debate on the new GDP numbers,  the Economic Survey on Friday called the new higher economic gro-wth numbers put out by Central Statistical Org-anisation (CSO) as “puzzling”. It said that the balance of evidence and caution counsel in favour of an interpretation of a recovering rather than surging Indian economy.

However, the survey used the same new GDP series and formula to predict that India will grow by 8.1- 8.5 per cent in 2015-16. In January, CSO revi-sed India’s growth to 6.9 per cent in the 2013-14 instead of earlier 4.7 per cent. Before the data revision, it was a dominant view that India had seen the worst growth in 2013-14. “Both directionally and in level terms, the growth estimate for 2013-14 is puzzling,” said the survey. It said that the growth estimates warrant further reflection. The survey said that these  numbers seem difficult to reconcile with other developments in the economy. It pointed out 2013-14 was a crisis year — capital flowed out, interest rates were tightened.  Under such circumstances, the report said it is difficult to see how an economy’s growth rate could accelerate so much in such circumstances.

 

“Also, imports of goods in 2013-14 apparently declined by 10 per cent, which, even accounting for the squeeze on gold imports, is high. Growth booms are typically acco-mpanied by import sur-ges not import declines. This boom was one over-reliant on domestic dem-and because the contribution of net external demand was substantially negative,” said the Economic Survey.

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