press trust of india
NEW DELHI, 16 JUNE: The Indian economy is in a crisis with growth slowing down, fiscal and current account deficits running high amid persistent inflation, says a study by an economic think tank.
“The Indian economy is in a crisis. While the growth rate has been declining…the issue (of high CAD) is getting amplified against the backdrop of slowing economy, high fiscal deficit and persistent inflation,” National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER) said.
India’s current account deficit (CAD) rose to a record 6.7 per cent in the quarter ended December 2013 of financial year 2012-13.
Attributing high CAD to GDP ratio slowdown in exports and increase in imports of oil, coal and gold, NCAER said high current account deficit requires high foreign investment.
“This might be a risky proposition given the global financial volatility and keeping in view the interests of foreign investors,” it said.
The study said that the persistent increase will lead to macro-economic risk as it raises concerns about the economy’s ability to honour its external payments obligations. “It also affects the confidence of potential lenders and investors.”
The NCAER study said there is a need to boost exports of merchandise and hence lower the deficit on balance of trade.
As per the study, manufacturing in India is still not internationally competitive in several sectors of production.
“Some long-term factors that need attention involve infrastructure, labour laws and governance reforms…moving to goods and services tax (GST) would add to India’s global competitiveness in manufactured goods,” NCAER said.
It further said India should play a proactive role in strengthening its trade integration with other Asian nations.
“India’s trade and investment relations with Asia will play a major role in boosting its exports in the Asian century,” the study said.
Also, India should strengthen its bilateral agreements and help bring about foreign trade agreements in groupings such as Asean+six nations, it added.
The six countries outside Asean are Australia, China, India, Japan, South Korea and New Zealand.
“Some long-term factors that need attention involve infrastructure, labour laws and governance reforms…moving to goods and services tax would add to India’s global competitiveness in manufactured goods”