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Economic Survey lowers growth forecast

Chief Economic Adviser (CEA)Arvind Subramanian has forecasted Indian economy s growth in 2017-18 to be closer to 6.5% than 7.5%. He said, the balance of risks to the growth outlook has clearly shifted to the downside of the range 6.5%-7.5%.

He underlined that there has been an  across-the-board deceleration in real activity since the first or second quarter of last year,  which could have intensified owing to demonetisation of high-value currency notes by the government last November.

He identified some risks ahead:
• GDP, core GVA, IIP, credit investment and capacity utilization all points to deceleration in real activity.
• There exist bottlenecks in the supply of fruits and vegetables.
• Seventh pay commission awards might prove to be inflationary.
• Farm loan waivers might drag on the growth.

According to CEA, farm loan waivers might drag on the growth rather than having an inflationary impact. To accommodate the loan waiver, States will have to cut down either expenditure or raise taxes which will be deflationary.

Economic Survey highlights some positive developments as:
• 3.5 Lakh new registrations on GST portal.
• In-principle decision to privatise Air India.
• Structural downward shift in Inflation.
• Actions taken to address stressed bank and corporate balance sheets.

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