Growth story to continue, inflation will be checked: FM

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New Delhi, Feb 29 (UNI) Finance Minister P Chidambaram today said there were enough indications that the economy would continue to grow at high rates, generating employment and higher tax revenues for the government to address the concerns of farmers and meet the growing social sector obligations.

Tax revenues were expected to remain buoyant in 2008-09 also despite the cut in personal income tax and excise duty, across the board as well as deeper sector-specific reductions, Mr Chidambaram said addressing the customary post-Budget press meet.

Giving the reasons for his assumption, he said India continued to be the most attractive investment desitination, both FDI and FII, remittances were on the rise, tourist arrivals had gone up and the earnings of the services sector were growing at a very rapid rate.

''The Indian economy is witnessing an investment boom and all analysis shows that there no decline in the investment boom and there is only some decline in consumption in some sectors.'' Fiscal steps like excise cuts had been announced in the Budget for the affected sectors, he said.

On inflation, he said the government and the RBI would watch the situation ''very closely'' and undertake supply side management to keep the prices under check despite the price spiral in respect of crude and foodgrains in the international market.

Mr Chidambaram said he had already discussed the price rise issue with Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

The corporate sector had declared unprecedented profits in the past two years and the trend would continue in 2008-09 as well as the government had not imposed any new restriction or burden in the Budget, he said.


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