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India firmly on growth path: FM

business Updated: Oct 17, 2011 21:49 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Pranab Mukherjee

Finance minister Pranab Mukherjee on Monday expressed confidence that the Indian economy would grow at 8.5 to 9% in the medium to long-term despite strong signs of a slowdown.

“In the medium to long-term, India remains firmly on a high GDP growth path of 8.5 to 9 %. We, however, need to be alert and respond to emerging challenges and concern, in a timely manner as we make efforts to achieve our potential as a young and fast-growing nation,” Mukherjee said while addressing the ADB-India partnership silver jubilee celebrations here.

India’s economy grew by 7.7% during April to June, the slowest in 18 months mirroring signs of a slowdown. The GDP growth data for July-September quarter will be released next month.

Industrial output grew by 4.1% in August presenting policy makers with a dilemma: the string of measures to cool prices hasn’t tamed inflation but eroded growth in the broader economy hurting investor sentiment and prospects of corporate income.

Like many other countries, food security and volatility in prices has been a matter of concern for India, Mukherjee said.

“We recognise that the increase in agriculture production on a sustainable basis is a long-term solution to the problems of availability as well as high and fluctuating food and commodity prices,” he said.