Investment Key For 8% Growth, $5 Trillion Economy: Chief Economic Advisor

Investment Key For 8% Growth, $5 Trillion Economy: Chief Economic Advisor

The Economic Survey projects India to clock a growth rate of 7 per cent in financial year 2019-20. The government's Chief Economic Adviser Krishnamurthy Subramanian - the main author of the annual report - mentions a departure from "traditional thinking by viewing the economy as being either in a virtuous or a vicious cycle" and therefore, "never in equilibrium". In an exclusive interaction with NDTV after the release of the Economic Survey, Mr Subramanian said that the report has tried to focus on Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision of making India a $5 trillion economy by 2024-25.

"In particular we are trying to do is to signal a change in the way we think about development and economy in our country... First we view jobs, demand, exports etc. in silos - trying to solve separate problems - when they actually are complementary to each other one without the other does not work," Mr Subramanian said.

"Secondly, one of the ways in which we are departing is that rather than thinking about the economy being in an equilibrium, economies are actually either in a virtuous cycle or a vicious cycle."

Asked whether the economy is in a position to adopt a virtuous cycle of growth, he said: "The important thing to understand here is that the growth slowdown itself has been because of an overhang from the era before 2014. We ended up having a problem on both the corporate and bank balance sheets. Moreover, the quality of investment itself was so poor that it led to a slowdown in investment."

"We have warned about it in the Survey that we do not want to follow the same path where we went about the quantity of investment without worrying about the quality of investment... We do recognise that there has been some slowdown but we can get to an 8 per cent growth path..."

"We get to that by getting on this virtuous cycle with investments, especially in private sector," he told NDTV.

The growth - according to the annual document which typically provides a policy perspective for the Union Budget - is expected to pick up on higher private investment and robust consumption.

Earlier in the day, in a press conference after the release of the Economic Survey report, Mr Subramanian said the country needs to shift gears to sustain a real economic growth rate of 8 per cent. "We have been growing at a good rate. But we now need to be shifting gears to grow at 8 per cent continuously in a sustained manner. That is what this strategic blueprint is about," he said.

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