Govt pegs GDP growth during UPA rule at 8.5%

Last Updated: Sunday, May 22, 2011 - 22:14

New Delhi: Pegging the country`s average economic growth rate at 8.5 percent during the UPA rule so far, the government on Sunday said it was determined to take India to the select league of "middle income countries".

Presenting the UPA government`s annual report card, Prime
Minister Manmohan Singh said that the Indian economy grew at
an unprecedented 8.5 percent growth rate from 2004-05 to
2010-11, despite a severe global financial crisis during
2008-09.

"This crisis slowed down the growth rate to 6.8 percent
in 2008-09, but the economy rebounded with a robust growth of
8.6 per cent in 2010-11," Singh said, adding that an
impressive growth was seen in agriculture, industry and
services sectors.

"The performance in agriculture has been particularly
satisfying, with our farmers producing more than 235 million
tonnes of foodgrains, the highest since independence," he
said.

Noting that rapid and broad-based economic growth was
essential for inclusive development, Singh said that India was
today widely seen as poised to embark on a sustained high
growth path of the type achieved by a handful of countries.

"We are determined to deliver on this promise so that
India moves rapidly into the ranks of middle income countries,
free of the burden on poverty, ignorance and disease that has
held us down for so long," he said.

As per the World Bank classifications, India is ranked
among lower-middle income economies along with countries like
Sri Lanka, China, Pakistan, Iraq and Indonesia.

The World Bank classifies the economies in broadly four
categories -- low income (those with Gross National Income per
capita of USD 995 or less), lower middle income (USD 996-
3,945), upper middle income (USD 3,946-12,195) and high income
(USD 12,196 or more).

Countries like the US, the UK, Australia, France, Germany
and Japan are ranked as high-income economies, those like
Brazil, Malaysia, Mauritius, Turkey and South Africa are
upper-middle income economies.

In the annual report card, Singh further said that the
government would look to chart an economic growth process
that was "socially inclusive and regionally balanced. "We will
endeavour to reduce inequities and inequalities that exist in
our country," he added.

The government said that it has also simplified its
foreign direct investment policy and steps have been taken
towards an improved taxation environment through Direct Tax
Code and Goods & Services Tax regimes.

While listing out growth in various sectors of the
economy, the government also said it was promoting people`s
ownership of PSUs through its disinvestment programme.



First Published: Sunday, May 22, 2011 - 22:14

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