External Debt at $ 190.5 billion by September end

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New Delhi, Dec 31 (UNI) India's external debt stock stood at 190.5 billion dollars (Rs 757,967 crore) by September end 2007, increasing by an amount of 9.9 billion dollars (5.5 per cent) over the quarter.

Of this around five billion dollars is explained by valuation change arising out of weakening of dollar against major international currencies and Indian Rupees.

The external debt stock series stand revised from March 2005 due to the inclusion of suppliers' credits of less than 180 days under short-term debt.

During the half year, April-September 2007 external debt stock in terms of US dollar has risen by 21 billion dollars (12.3 per cent), of which seven billion dollars is accounted for by the depreciation of dollar in the international market.

In terms of rupees, the increase in external debt of India during this period was only Rs 17,868 crore or 2.4 per cent. The rise in external debt outstanding over the quarter ending September 2007 was essentially brought about by a rise in External Commercial Borrowings, NRI deposits, multilateral debt and short term debt.

The share of long-term debt in total external debt at end September 2007 was 83.8 (159.7 billion dollars). Composition-wise, under long- term debt, multilateral and bilateral debt rose by one billion dollars and 0,8 billion dollars, reaching 37.1 billion dollars and 16.7 billion dollars respectively.

The stock of commercial borrowings at 51.8 billion dollars and NRI deposits at 43.6 billion dollars were higher by 4 billion dollars and 1 billion dollars, respectively, as compared to those at the end of the preceding quarter.

Rupee debt remained broadly at the same level of around 2 billion dollars as at the end of previous quarter.

Commercial Borrowings accounted for the highest share of 27.2 per cent in total external debt outstanding at end-September 2007. As a proportion of the total external debt, Non-Resident Indian deposits accounted for 22.9 per cent of the total debt at end-September 2007, followed by multilateral debt at 19.5 per cent and bilateral debt at 8.7 per cent. Export credit and Rupee debt accounted for 4.5 per cent and 1.1 per cent, respectively.

In respect of short-term debt, the coverage is now made more comprehensive, with the inclusion of suppliers' credits up to six months and investment by Foreign Institutional Investors (FII) in shortterm debt instruments.

As at end-September 2007, short-term debt stood at 30.8 billion dollars, accounting for 16.2 per cent of the total external debt.

The total external debt at end-September 2007 considered in terms of sovereign debt (51.3 billion dollars) and private debt (139.2 billion dollars) was in the ratio of 26.9 : 73.1.

While the foreign exchange reserves cover for external debt rose to 130 per cent at end-September 2007, debt servicing as a proportion of gross external current receipts (debt-service ratio) has declined from 9.9 per cent in 2005-06 to 4.8 per cent in 2006-07 and further to 4.5 per cent during April-September 2007.

The major currency of denomination in India's external debt portfolio continued to be dollar, accounting for 52.8 per cent of total external debt at end-September 2007.

UNI

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