India Inc hails economy's turnaround, expects GDP to rise further

New Delhi, Aug 30: Cheering the rebound in India's economy which grew 5.7 per cent in the April-June quarter, highest in the past two-and-a-half years, India Inc on Friday said it expects the GDP to pick up further on the back of conducive investment policies and execution of reforms by government.

"It (the GDP) will only pick up further and the Indian economy is well poised to reach six per cent or may even cross the six per cent mark for the full financial year 2014-15," Assocham president Rana Kapoor said.

CII Director General Chandrajit Banerjee said that going forward, the industry body expects that quick and pro-active government policies would act as a 'growth propeller', further strengthening business confidence and providing stimulus to growth.

He, however, emphasised that in order to convert the first signs of revival into a full-fledged recovery, it is necessary that the government continues on its path of implementing the reforms agenda which would restart the investment cycle and revive demand in the economy.

India's gross domestic product had expanded by 4.7 per cent in April-June quarter of the fiscal year ended March 31, 2014.

According to data released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) on Friday, manufacturing sector recorded a growth of 3.5 per cent in the first quarter of 2014-15 as against a contraction of 1.2 per cent in Q1, 2013-14.

The mining sector also grew by 2.1 per cent in April-June quarter compared a decline in production by 3.9 per cent the year-ago period.

The highest growth rate during Q1, 2014-15 was recorded by financial services sector at 10.4 per cent, followed by electricity gas and water supply at 10.2 per cent.

The previous high of GDP growth rate was recorded at 6 per cent in the October-December quarter of 2011-12. The economic growth in preceding quarter (January-March) was 4.6 per cent.

Meanwhile, Ficci president Sidharth Birla said, "The overall economic sentiment has seen an improvement in the last couple of months and we are quite optimistic that this positive trend will continue through the year in view of several positive measures taken by the new government. This momentum has to be carried forward with greater fervor."

Gross fixed capital formation, a barometer of investment at current prices, is estimated at Rs. 8.14 lakh crore for Q1, as against Rs. 7.32 lakh crore a year ago.

At constant (2004-2005) prices, the GFCF is estimated at Rs. 4.96 lakh crore in Q1 as against Rs. 4.63 lakh crore.

Indian economy grew 5.7% in April-June quarter, highest in two-and-half years

"Though a turnaround has been noted in gross fixed capital formation, the uptrend in investment cycle needs to be firmed up further Some of the announcements made in the first 100 days by the new government are expected to facilitate both foreign and domestic investments," Mr Birla said.

"The government's focus on clearing stalled projects would propel investments in the economy," PHD Chamber of Commerce president Sharad Jaipuria said.


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