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Rendezvous with the PM

business Updated: Mar 26, 2009 22:56 IST
HT Correspondent

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has invited corporate leaders on Saturday to discuss the broad contours of an economic strategy revive and sustain growth amid a global economic crisis.

Singh will also seek inputs from industry leaders to firm up India’s position to be taken at the G-20 summit meeting of leaders of elite economy nations in London on April 2.

Government sources said invitations have been sent to top industry leaders Ratan Tata, Mukesh Ambani, Anil Ambani, Anand Mahindra, Sunil Mittal and Baba Kalyani for the brainstorming session, which comes in the backdrop of sluggish tax collections and staggering industrial demand.

The government on Thursday said it will borrow an additional Rs 1,40,000 crore during the first half of the next fiscal year to fund its increasing public expenditure.

India Inc., caught in an attack of sluggish demand and dipping confidence, has sought easier access to bank funds to keep planned expansion projects going.

In recent months the government has taken a slew of fiscal measures, including sharp cuts in excise duties and increased plan spending to help the economy tide over the downturn.

But those incentives are set to push up the central government’s fiscal deficit to a worrisome 6 per cent of GDP.

The gross borrowings in 2009/10, which include funds for repayment of maturing bonds, would be Rs 2,41,000 crore, Economic Affairs Secretary Ashok Chawla told reporters after a meeting at the Reserve Bank to work out the modalities of the debt-raising programme..

The RBI has cut the repo rate —the rate at which banks borrow from the central bank—by four percentage points to 5 per cent in the last six months signalling a further reduction in the final borrowing rates.

“We believe that the number of measures we have taken over the past six months have yielded positive results and going forward, we will do whatever is required,” RBI Governor D.Subbarao said.