Despite scanty rains, slowdown, India will grow at 6.5 percent: Manmohan Singh

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New Delhi, Nov. 8 (ANI): Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday said that India's economic growth is expected to be around 6.5 percent this fiscal despite an inadequate monsoon and the global recession.

"In the current financial year, we faced the adverse impact of an inadequate monsoon and the resultant slow down in agriculture. Nevertheless growth is expected to be around 6.5 percent," Dr. Singh said, addressing the India Economic Summit of the World Economic Forum (WEF) here.

Observing that India has dealt with the global slowdown in a far better way than most countries, Dr. Singh predicted that the GDP could accelerate to seven percent next year if monsoon were normal.

"There are clearly signs of an upturn in the economy. With a normal monsoon next year, we hope to achieve a growth rate of over 7 percent," he said.

"I am happy to say that India has been able to face the global economic downturn better than most other countries in the world. Our strategy therefore must aim at sustaining a high rate of growth on the strength of strong domestic demand. We seek to achieve this through a large increase in investment in infrastructure," he added.

Addressing the high-profile audience of chief executives, key policy-makers and representatives of civil society from across the world, Dr. Singh pointed out that India's growth had accelerated from 5.6 percent in the 1980s to 9 percent in the five-year period preceding the global financial crisis.

"Our strategy today is not just to deliver rapid growth, but to deliver rapid and inclusive growth, a growth that will provide productive employment to our young population and raise living standards in rural areas across the country," he said. (ANI)

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