Friday, July 30, 2010


Growth Prospects
1. The performance of the Indian economy in 2009/10 greatly exceeded expectations. The farm sector which was expected to contract showed resilience, growing by 0.2 per cent despite the weak South West monsoon. The non farm sector also did well. It is the assessment of the Council that the Indian economy would grow at 8.5 per cent in 2010/11 and 9.0 per cent in 2011/12. In the current fiscal year, agriculture will grow at 4.5 per cent, industry at 9.7 per cent and services at 8.9 per cent.

Global Prospects
2. The global economic and financial situation is recovering slowly. The large fiscal deficits and high debt ratios coupled with slow economic growth have created unsettling conditions for business and have potential for causing great volatility in financial markets. It is hard to visualize strong economic growth in the advanced economies in 2010 and to a large extent in 2011. The implications of this, for India’s strategy to return to the 9.0 per cent growth trajectory, are that public policy must promote business confidence and facilitate increased investment.

Structural Factors
3. In 2008/09 the investment rate fell on account of the drawdown of inventories. This trend has reversed and the Council expects the investment rate to be higher at 36 per cent (of GDP) in 2009/10, rising to 37 per cent in 2010/11 and 38.4 per cent in 2011/12. Similarly we expect the domestic savings rate to pick up and reach 33.4 per cent in 2009/10, 34.3 per cent in 2010/11 and 35.5 per cent in 2011/12. These rates should enable the economy to grow in a sustained manner at 9.0 per cent.

4. Private corporate investment and total investment in fixed assets is expected to recover strongly but will not reach the previous high levels. Government Final Consumption Expenditure to GDP which hit a peak of 12.3 per cent in 2009/10 is expected to fall to 10.3 per cent in 2011/12. On the contrary, Private Final Consumption Expenditure which declined in 2008/09 and 2009/10 is expected to increase in the current and next fiscal year. Since 2001-02 the progressive decline in the Private Final Consumption Expenditure has been accompanied by a matching increase in the investment expenditure component of GDP.

Sectoral Growth Projections
5. In the backdrop of a weak South West (SW) monsoon in 2009, the Council had expected the farm sector GDP to decline by 2 per cent. However, the actual loss in farm sector output was less. The strength in horticulture, animal husbandry and fisheries, as well as higher cotton output, helped farm sector GDP to ultimately register a marginally positive growth of 0.2 per cent.

6. On the basis of a normal SW monsoon forecast by the Meteorological Department, one may reasonably expect a strong rebound in crop output in Kharif and Rabi in 2010/11. The better seed and fertilizer availability and the construction of a large number of water harvesting structures through the MNREGA lend strength to these expectations. Moreover, the expansion in horticulture and animal husbandry and a low base effect should generate a farm sector GDP growth of around 4.5 per cent in the current fiscal.

7. Industrial sector recovery became evident in June 2009 and by August 2009 the General Index of Industrial Production (IIP) registered double digit growth rate driven by similar growth rates in output in the manufacturing and mining sector. The service sector has also shown strong recovery with GDP originating in the important sub-sector of “trade, hotels, restaurant, transport & communication” surging in the second half of 2009/10. The impact of the civil service pay hike and the arrears lifted growth of the “community personal services” sub-sector in the first half, but eased up in the second. Export related service activity (software and Business Process Outsourcing) was sluggish throughout 2009/10 but was more than offset by the recovery in domestic-oriented service activity. Overall, non-farm sector GDP grew by 8.8 per cent in 2009/10.

8. In 2009/10 the mining sector output grew at 10 per cent but a slowdown is expected in 2010/11 with a projected growth of 8.0 per cent in both output and GDP arising in the sector. Manufacturing output growth in 2009/10 was strong in all the quarters, especially in the case of capital goods and durable consumer goods. The only exception to this was non-durable consumer goods which were impacted by poor export growth and a lower output of sugar. Even though the manufacturing sector has recorded strong growth rate in April and May 2010, we expect this to ease as the base effect wears off. The projected growth rate in the manufacturing sector and the general index (IIP) is expected at 10 per cent in 2010/11.

9. The expected expansion of investment in physical infrastructure, including housing will drive the construction sector. Accordingly, the GDP arising in the construction sub-sector would rise by 10 per cent in 2010/11, which is likely to inch up to 11 per cent in 2011/12. In the “trade, hotel, restaurants, transport & communication” sub sector, growth picked up in the last two quarters of the year. We expect this trend to be reinforced with 10 per cent growth in both 2010/11 as well as 2011/12. There will be no contribution to expansion from civil service pay in the current year but the private sector component of the sub-sector “community and personnel services” will continue to register strong expansion in line with the rest of the economy. Software and BPO activity is expected to expand significantly in 2010/11, both in the domestic and export sectors. Alongwith steady expansion in the financial industry we expect this sub-sector to record growth of 9.5 per cent in 2010/11 which will rise further in 2011/12.

10. Overall, we expect GDP arising in the industrial sector to expand 9.6 per cent in 2010/11, rising to 10.3 per cent in 2011/12. The expansion in the services sector is expected to approach 9 per cent in 2010/11 and inch up to 9.6 per cent in 2011/12. Over all, the non-farm sector is expected to grow by 9.2 per cent in 2010/11 and 9.8 per cent in 2011/12.

Trade & External Sector
11. According to the DGCI&S report the merchandise trade exports touched $176.6 billion in 2009/10 which was 4.7 per cent less than 2008/09. Engineering and electronic goods were the hardest hit declining by more than 20 per cent. Because of currency fluctuations, the rupee value of exports showed practically no decline in 2009/10. The value of merchandise imports in 2009/10 in dollar terms was 8.2 per cent lower at $278.7 billion and 4 per cent lower in rupee terms.

To read the full report; ECONOMIC OUTLOOK