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'Govt doesn't have to do anything radical', says Chief Economic Adviser

By Vikas

Asserting that temporary effects of demonetisation and GST have dissipated, Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian on Monday said that the government does not have to do anything "radical" and just focus on "what it has started already".

Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian

During the briefing on Economic Survey 2017-18, Subramanian said that the rise in oil prices this year affected consumption, government finances and also held back real economic activity.

"Major achievements this year gone are the launch of Goods & Services Tax, decisive tackling of Twin Balance Sheet challenge and validation of achievements and recognition of medium term prospects," he said.

"From the very first survey onwards we've spoken about the twin balance sheet challenges, under capitalised banks which held back growth for a very long time. This year a series of very important steps are being taken," he added.

He said that finishing what the government has started would be a very ambitious and fantastic agenda to complete.

"GST brings out new findings on the Indian economy that says reforms has increased tax rolls, formal sector is much bigger than believed, firm structure of exports highly diversified and states are big traders," Subramanian said.

The Chief Economic adviser said that India needs to gradually move from being a net consumer of knowledge to becoming a net producer.

"Policy agenda for the year ahead-support agriculture, stabalise GST, complete TBS actions with reforms, privatise Air-India and head-off macro economic pressures and possibility of a 'sudden stall' from rising oil prices and sharp correction in stock prices," he said.

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley tabled Economic Survey 2017-18 in the Lok Sabha on Monday. The survey has predicted India's GDP growth to be between 7-7.5% in the financial year 2018-19.

[Highlights of Economic Survey: GDP expected to grow between 7-7.5% in 2018-19]

The first Economic Survey after the introduction of Goods and Services Tax (GST) highlighted that while services sector is expected to grow for at 8.3 per cent in FY18, industrial growth will be at 4.4 per cent, and agriculture sector will grow at 2.1 per cent.

The survey is considered as a precursor to the Union Budget 2018-19, to be announced by the Arun Jaitley on Thursday (February 1).

The survey is a budget document that analyses the Indian economy over the last 12 years. It also reviews the performance of various schemes introduced by the government.

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