Economic Survey to prescribe steps to arrest declining GDP growth

Economic survey

The Economic Survey to be tabled in Parliament tomorrow is likely to suggest a series of steps to arrest the declining GDP growth, which is estimated to be at the decade-low of 5 per cent in the current fiscal.

Prepared by a team of economists, led by Chief Economic Advisor Raghuram Rajan, the Survey is likely to make a strong case for accelerating economic reforms to neutralise domestic and global factors which have stymied growth.

As the official assessment of the country's economy, the Survey is customarily tabled in Parliament by Finance Minister ahead of the General Budget. The document is viewed as being important because it prescribes steps for the government to deal with various economic problems, leaving the onus of taking hard decisions on the government.

The major focus of the Survey this year is likely to be on pushing economic growth, which has been projected by the Central Statistical Organisation (CSO) at 5 per cent for this fiscal, sharply lower than the original estimate of 7.6 per cent (+/- 0.25 per cent).

Taking into account persistent contraction of industrial production and exports, the Survey is expected to suggest measures to deal with the issues impacting them.

It may, however, welcome the government's recent reform initiatives with regard to partially deregulating diesel price, opening up of FDI in retail and liberalising foreign investment norms for various sectors, including insurance.

On the taxation front, the survey could pitch for early implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and the Direct Taxes Code (DTC), with a view to expanding tax base and raising tax-GDP ratio.

The issues like surge in gold import and widening Current Account Deficit (CAD) too are likely to figure prominently in the Survey.

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