Congress says PM got it wrong on GDP

‘Figure is $2.50 trillion and not $8 trillion as claimed by Modi’

September 29, 2015 12:19 am | Updated 12:19 am IST - New Delhi:

India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) became a subject of political debate on Monday. Following Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s remarks in the U.S., that India’s GDP is $8 trillion, the Congress said on Monday that when the UPA government had left the office, India’s GDP was $2.27 trillion, and India’s GDP today was close to $2.50 trillion.

“His officials should give him the right papers at the right time so that he does not make such mistakes because he is not speaking in the private dining room or not reporting to the RSS leadership … The whole world is watching what the PM of India has to say,” senior Congress leader and former Union Minister Anand Sharma said briefing reporters.

Mr. Sharma, however, expressed confidence in Mr. Modi’s statement that the size of India’s economy could grow to $20 trillion. “Yes that is achievable for India.”

According to the latest available data from the World Bank, India’s GDP was $2.067 trillion in 2014. On Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) basis, according to the latest available data — from the 2011 International Comparison Program in which the World Bank is involved — India went from the 10th largest economy in 2005 to the third largest, moving ahead of Japan, in 2011 with $5.75 trillion GDP.

The study assesses economies based on PPP or an estimate of the comparable real living costs across countries by factoring in the differences in price levels and the exchange rates.

On per capita GDP, however, India ranked 129th among 177 nations in PPP terms. India’s per capita GDP, according to the World Bank report, was $4,735 in 2011.

Mr. Sharma also said that while, according to Mr. Modi, the amount of Foreign Direct Investment that had come to India over the past one year represented an unprecedented 40 per cent increase over the previous year, the truth was that the growth was actually lower at 23 per cent. “It is true compared to 2013 that in 2014 India did receive more FDI but not the 40 per cent increase which he has claimed. It is 23 per cent more than the previous year and the total FDI which came last year was $44 billion, which is exactly $3 billion less than what FDI India got in 2011 as it was struggling with global recession.”

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