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India to change base year for accounts every 5 year: Vasan

Written by: Staff

Hyderabad, Apr 3: Revealing that the Centre had decided to shortly implement a ''bold initiative'' of changing the base year every five years for assessing national income, Union Minister of State(independent charge) for Statistics and Programme Implementation G K Vasan today urged States' to bring out Gross Domestic Product(GDP) for every district to win the confidence of investors, both domestic and foreign.

''The need of the hour is to shift the base year to a more recent year so that the contributions of the fast growing economy is reflected in the national income more accurately'', he said, asking States' to adopt the New Series of National Accounts Statistics with 1999-2000 as the base year.

Inaugurating a five-day national workshop on New Series of State Domestic Product at the prestigious Marri Chenna Reddy Human Resources Development Institute here, he said foreign investors as also captains of trade and industry within the country were keen to know about the performance of each district before making investments and ''it is high time District Domestic Products(DDPs) are assessed.

The Centre would soon come out with Retail Price Indices for rural and urban areas, Mr Vasan, who released compilation of State Gross fixed capital formation and Gross State Domestic Product as also handbook on Statistics brought out by the Department of Economics and Statisitics(DE&S) in Andhra Pradesh.

He congratulated the State DE&S Director Saroja Rama Rao for use of Information Technology by the Department in assessing the State's income.

Speaking against changing of the base year every year as in some advanced countries, Ministry Secretary R C Panda, in the keynote address said ''we have to be so close and yet not so far away to capture the robust changes witnessed by the economy.'' The shifting the base year every five years as advocated by the United Nations system of National Accounts suited also Indian conditions, where planning was done for five years, he explained, adding that the National Accounting System had won appreciation from instituions like the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, among others for its transparency.

He said ''India has been asked to hold training programme for the members of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation(SAARC) at Shimla next month''.

Expressing doubts over the accounting system in China, where 11 per cent change in the National Income had been shown with change of Base year, he said the overall GDP at factor cost in the new series for the year 1999-2000 had increased only by 1.7 per cent to 17,92,292 crore.

The base years of the National Accounts series had been shifted from 1948-49 to 1960-61 in August 1967, from 1960-61 to 19770-71 in January 1978, from 1970-71 to 1980-81 in February 1988 and from 1980-91 to 1993-94 in February 1999 and to 1999-2000 in January 2006, said Central Statistical Organisation Additional Director General Vishnu Kumar.


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