Speaking at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Friday said India could not escape the ill effect of the global economic slowdown. He said that India's growth rate fell in the last few years and today India faces the challenge to return to 7-8 per cent growth. The Finance Minister also said that he was eyeing a growth of 9% in the next two years.
Mukherjee said that India's exports have been badly hit due to the cascading effect of the economic downturn. He especially mentioned the IT sector in which exports have gone down sharply.
In the opinion of the Finance Minister, the Indian economy faces three major problems at the moment. Mentioning the importance of achieving 8-9% growth, the Finance Minister also talked about the need for fiscal consolidation. He said there was a need to reduce the fiscal deficit, which is 6.8% at present and he wants to bring it down to 5.5% in the next two years. He ultimately wants to bring down the fiscal deficit to 4 per cent. The FM further expressed the need of inclusive growth.
The FM said that a number of hindrances were their in achieving the growth and it won't be easy get economic recovery in the next 2-3 years.
The FM also expressed the need of improvement in the security environment of the country for faster growth. He expressed the need of institutional changes in the country and said that the reform processes must beign to this end.