No undue tax hike for double-digit GDP | india | Hindustan Times
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No undue tax hike for double-digit GDP

Unveiling his roadmap for a 9-10 per cent GDP growth in the next 4-5 years, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday assured taxpayers there would be no undue increase in rates to mobilise resources to achieve this.

india Updated: Feb 04, 2006 19:18 IST
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Unveiling his roadmap for a 9-10 per cent GDP growth in the next 4-5 years, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday assured taxpayers there would be no undue increase in rates to mobilise resources to achieve this.

Speaking on a economic policy issues during his second national press conference here, the PM informed that free the trade agreement with Asean would be signed by year-end, close on the heels of a similar pact with Thailand and a comprehensive economic cooperation treaty with Singapore.

While assuring that adequate funds would be found for all the flagship social sector programmes, Manmohan Singh assured taxpayers that there would not be undue increase in rates to mobilise resources.

"We do not believe in a confiscatory taxation regime. Our taxes would be broad-based and modest" the PM said.

Singh said the fiscal situation had improved during the two years and that the states are flush with cash.

As for the double-digit growth, Dr Manmohan Singh said a per cent each could be added to the GDP by providing productive jobs, unleashing competitive forces, tackling technology issues and enhancing savings rate by 4-5 per cent.

The PM was categorical that FTA with Asean countries would be signed by year-end, adding that FTA with China was being considered.

On infrastructure, Singh decried state governments providing free electricity on election eve, saying he would meet chief ministers in the next fortnight on power sector reforms. He said the interaction with chief ministers would be an exercise in persuasion. He hoped this would help in building a consensus on the issues pertaining to power sector reforms.

Stating that the government planned to add 1,50,000 MW in the next seven years, Singh wanted the public to pay realistic value for utilities. "It does not mean no subsidies, but it should be based on the capacity of the user to pay," he explained.

Singh said the infrastructure position was promising with the roads sector humming with activity. "We expect investment of over Rs. 1,70,000 crore in the national highway programme in the next 7 years. Our airports are buzzing with flights. Delhi and Mumbai airports will be modernised. Hyderabad and Bangalore airports will be soon getting new airports. New ports are under development with more in the pipeline," he stated.

The PM pointed out that the railways aren't only performing admirably but have an ambitious Rs 25,000 crore freight corridor project as well.

Road ahead Tax rates to be modest, broad-based Finances improved in last two years 8-10% GDP growth in 4-5 yrs FTA with Asean by year-end Hints at strategic partnership with China Productive jobs to push up GDP by 1% 4-5% growth in savings to add another 1% to GDP.