Gaining momentum, economy grew by 7.9% in March quarter to consolidate India’s position as the fastest growing major economy with a five-year high growth rate of 7.6% for the full fiscal on robust manufacturing growth.
Enthused by the impressive numbers for 2015-16, as against 7.2% in previous fiscal, the government said the growth rate can go up to 8% in the current fiscal due to better monsoon.
The farm sector also rebounded to the growth zone, as against a contraction in previous year, although the rate of expansion was low at 1.2% in 2015-16.
The industry lauded the numbers and expressed hope that better monsoon and further reforms will help expand the economy at even a faster pace.
According to the data released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) on Tuesday, the growth in manufacturing and farm sectors during the fourth quarter accelerated to 9.3% and 2.3%, respectively.
The core sector data in April too indicated momentum in the economic activity as it grew at rate of 8.5% in the month, the highest in the last four years.
Commenting on GDP numbers, economic affairs secretary Shaktikanta Das said India can move towards 8 per cent growth with better agriculture production.
“The various measures that the government has been taking in the last couple of years is beginning to show results and overall there are greenshoots...this year hopefully with good monsoon we should look at a growth closer to 8 per cent,” he said.
Finance Secretary Ashok Lavasa said, “We should work towards seeing this (GDP growth) number grow. We are focusing on capital spending in infra and social spending.”
“Growth rate in the 4th quarter of 2015-16 at 7.9% almost hits the magical 8% mark. Good days ahead,” NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Arvind Panagariya tweeted.
The CSO has also revised the GDP growth rate for previous quarters of 2015-16 -- 7.5% for April-June, 7.6% for July-September and 7.2% for October-December.
The 7.6% growth rate for 2015-16 is the same as projected by the CSO in its advance estimates of national income earlier in February this year.
CII Director General Chandrajit Banerjee too said that the CII Director General Chandrajit Banerjee too said that the economy would achieve close to 8 per cent growth in 2016-17, “riding on the crest of strong macro-economic fundamentals, positive business sentiment and pro-growth monetary and fiscal policies”.
“Growth of 7.6% for the fiscal year 2015-16 is in line with the advance estimates...In the current global economic scenario, this is a commendable performance and comes on the back of comprehensive reform measures undertaken by the government,” said FICCI President Harshavardhan Neotia.
As per the CSO data, GDP of the mining and quarrying segment grew by 8.6% in the last quarter of 2015-16 whereas electricity, gas, water supply and other utility services recorded a growth rate of 9.3%.
Similarly, the construction sector grew at 4.5%, trade, hotels, transport and communication at 9.9%, financial, real estate and professional services at 9.1%, and public administration, defence and other services at 6.4% in the fourth quarter of 2015-16.
According to the new concept of Gross Value Added (GVA), farm sector grew at 1.2% in 2015-16 as against contraction of 0.2% in the previous fiscal.
The manufacturing sector accelerated to 9.3%, up from 5.5% in the previous fiscal.
However, the mining and quarrying segment recorded a growth of 7.4% in FY2016, down from 10.8% in the previous fiscal.
According to data, the Gross National Income at current prices was estimated at Rs 134.19 lakh crore in 2015-16, against Rs 123.41 lakh crore during 2014-15, showing a rise of 8.7%.
The per capita income at current prices during 2015-16 is estimated to have attained a level of Rs 93,293 as compared to the first revised estimate for the year 2014-15 of Rs 86,879 showing a rise of 7.4 per cent.
The GDP at current prices for 2015-16 is estimated at Rs 135.76 lakh crore, showing a growth rate of 8.7 per cent over the first revised estimates of GDP for the year 2014-15 of Rs 124.88 lakh crore.
The real GDP or GDP at constant (2011-12) prices for 2015-16 is now estimated at Rs 113.50 lakh crore showing a growth rate of 7.6% over the first revised estimates of GDP for 2014-15 of Rs 105.52 lakh crore, it added.