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FM, Moody paint mixed picture on economy

Nov 18, 1999

The Finance Minister (FM) has stated that the Indian economy would grow by 6.5 7% during the current fiscal year. He has also pointed out that the current level of fiscal deficit was unsustainable. The FM has also stated that the government will be shortly introducing legislation to regulate non banking finance companies, while at the same time it will press for a new revenue sharing arrangement between the centre and the states.

The projections regarding economic growth are 1.4 1.9% higher than the growth projected by the Centre for Monitoring the Indian Economy (CMIE), a respected independent economic forecasting company. The FM seems to be betting on an acceleration of output in the economy, as during the first quarter of the year, GDP growth was pegged at a much lower 5.5%. Everyone, however, concurs with the FM when it comes to the fiscal deficit.

In an unrelated article, Moody's Investors Service has said that India needs to accelerate the pace of economic reforms. The agency highlighted India's ability to withstand the various crises that engulfed the world in the last two years. The annual report on India states that the reasons that constrain India's rating include high levels of debt, infrastructure shortfalls, tensions with Pakistan, bureaucratic rigidities and labour market.

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