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PM hopeful of 8.5% growth this fiscal

business Updated: May 29, 2011 22:48 IST
Manmohan Singh

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday expressed confidence that the government will be able to achieve 8.5% growth during the current fiscal despite concerns over high oil prices.

“As of now I have not seen any sign that we should change our view with regard to our ability to sustain a growth rate of 8.5%... I am confident that we will be able to sustain a growth rate of 8.5% this year,” Singh said.

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in its annual credit policy had pegged 8% growth rate for the current fiscal year, down from 8.6% in 2010-11.

“Whatever evidence we have, we expect a normal monsoon. And if the monsoon is normal, it will strengthen our ability to control food inflation,” Singh said, referring to the agriculture situation and its impact on inflation.

The headline inflation was 8.66% in April, much higher than the RBI’s comfort level of 5-6%.

“There are problems with regards to the burden of oil subsidies. They have to be tackled and all these issues will be claiming our attention in the weeks to come,” Singh said on oil prices.

Referring to the race for the top job at IMF, Singh said the struggle for an “equitable” world order will take long as rich nations do not want to give up power easily.