Is Indian economy losing steam? Here’s what P Chidambaram and Neelkanth Mishra have to say


Veteran Congress leader and former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram, on Saturday, said that the Indian economy is losing steam considering the fall in quarterly GDP figures. His views came after the country’s GDP growth slowed further in the December quarter as pent-up demand eased and weakness in the manufacturing sector continued. India registered 4.4 per cent year-on-year growth in the October-December quarter, down from 6.3 per cent in the July-September quarter. The figure stood at 13.5 per cent in the April-June quarter last year.

While sharing his views at India Today Conclave, Chidambaram said, “My estimate (for India’s GDP growth) is between 4.1 per cent and 4.3 per cent for the fourth quarter. So, it is a declining quarterly growth rate, which means the Indian economy is losing steam.”

Will India continue to grow faster than other economies in the world? Chidambaram added that China, when it grows at 3 per cent or 3.5 per cent, will still add several times the annual output than India growing at 7 per cent.

“China is five and a half times larger than India. Therefore, the relevant number is the per capita income which shows that we are still a very poor country,” he said.

On the other hand, Neelkanth Mishra, Equity Strategist, Credit Suisse and advisor to the Prime Minister is bullish on the GDP growth and the Indian economy. “India is seen as a stable economy amid the ongoing global financial turbulence. It will continue to attract foreign investors which can bring skills and technology,” he said adding the expectations of India’s GDP growth should be that it will contribute to 12-15 per cent of incremental growth over the next five years.

He also added that the quarterly GDP numbers are extremely inaccurate. “As per NSO (National Statistical Office) numbers, the fourth quarter GDP growth is going to be 6 per cent. “Everyone expects FY24 GDP to be 6 per cent plus. But, I think it should be 7 per cent. Sales of the BSE 500 companies also show that there is absolutely no slowdown in output,” Mishra added.

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