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GDP growth to slip below 7%: Experts

January 5, 2018

New Delhi:India’s economic growth is likely to be below 7% this fiscal, say experts, citing GST disruption and lingering impact of note ban. The Indian economy grew at 7.1% in 2016-17, against 8% in 2015-16.
The Central Statistics Office (CSO) is scheduled to release its advance estimates of national income 2017-18 .
“It is difficult for GDP to cross 7% this fiscal unless the base is revised downwards. The economy is expected to do well in the third and fourth quarter,” SBI Research Chief Economist Soumya Kanti Ghosh said.
Ghosh said the GDP growth would be 6.5% on unchanged base last year.
Elaborating further, Ghosh said the growth could be higher if the last year’s expansion is revised downwards because lower base last fiscal would result in higher growth for 2017-18.
Echoing similar views, former Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia said the GDP growth would be around 6.2% to 6.3% for the current fiscal.
Sugata Bhattacharya, chief economist at Axis Bank, said the Gross Value Added (GVA) would be 6.6-6.8% for the current fiscal.
“We have not factored in tax collection in the current fiscal. But if the tax collection remain robust then the GDP growth could be higher,” he said.
The GVA is a new concept introduced by the CSO to measure the performance of the economy. The GDP is tabulated by adding taxes to the GVA after reducing subsidies from that.
Former Planning Commission member and senior economist Abhijit Sen said the GDP growth would be in the range of 6 to 6.5% this fiscal, citing glitches on tax collection front after the GST rollout.
He was skeptical about buoyancy in the latest PMI data and other numbers used for showing rosy picture of state of economy at this point of time.

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