Reserve Bank-sponsored professional forecasters on Monday scaled down India’s growth projection to 4.8 per cent for the current fiscal from 5.7 per cent estimated earlier.
In its Macroeconomic and Monetary Developments Second Quarter Review 2013-14, the central bank said the survey by professional forecasters outside the Reserve Bank indicated a slowdown in growth.
“The median growth forecast for 2013-14 was revised downwards to 4.8 per cent from 5.7 per cent in the previous round, which is lower than the growth of 5 per cent registered during 2012-13,” the RBI said.
Various external agencies like the IMF and the World Bank have lowered their growth projections for India. Their estimates range between 4.3-5.9 per cent.
The Reserve Bank, however, said modest improvement in growth is possible in the second half of 2013-14.
“Growth has slackened to a 17-quarter low of 4.4 per cent during first quarter of 2013-14. On current reckoning, growth in 2013-14 is likely to stay at about the level of last year.
“After a slower H1, a modest recovery is likely in H2 of 2013-14. This is expected to come from a rebound in agricultural growth backed by a better than normal south-west monsoon and a pick-up in exports,” the RBI said.
In part, the central bank said, slowdown is the result of global cyclical conditions. However, it has been exacerbated by domestic factors, a large part of which can be addressed through concerted policy actions and their implementation.
“Small but sustained policy steps can deliver growth back to the economy,” the RBI said, and added, “To recoup India’s potential growth, first and foremost it will be necessary to secure macroeconomic stability as failure to do so can result in a lasting growth collapse”.