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Fitch lowers India's growth forecast to 6%

Last updated on: September 28, 2012 14:56 IST

Fitch lowers India's growth forecast to 6%

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Ratings firm Fitch on Friday lowered India's growth projection for the current fiscal to 6 per cent from 6.5 per cent estimated earlier citing challenging economic outlook.

"India's economic outlook remains challenging.

"The projections for real GDP growth (has been trimmed) to 6 per cent for FY 2012-13 from a previous estimate of 6.5 per cent," Fitch said in its Global Economic Outlook report.

India's economic growth has slowed to a three-year low of 5.3 per cent in the April-June quarter of the current fiscal.

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Image: Fitch Ratings building is seen in New York.
Photographs: Jessica Rinaldi/Reuters
Tags: Fitch , India , GDP , OIndia

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Fitch lowers India's growth forecast to 6%

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The growth had fallen to 6.5 per cent in the 2011-12 fiscal.

Fitch said the high fiscal deficit leaves little room for government for fiscal easing and increasing spending.

A breakdown of gross domestic product by expenditure shows that domestic demand is stagnating as fixed investment and private consumption grew just 0.7 per cent YoY and 4 per cent YoY respectively in April-June quarter, Fitch said.

It said weak investments are affecting supply capacity and thereby pointing towards weaker growth outlook.

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Image: Workers carry a packed basket of vegetables at a wholesale market in Kolkata.
Photographs: Rupak De Chowdhuri/Reuters
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Fitch lowers India's growth forecast to 6%

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Fitch also cautioned that volatile political environment poses risk towards implementation of various reform initiatives unveiled by the government earlier this month.

"The authorities have announced a range of reforms, including liberalisation of FDI in multi-brand retail which may help to restore confidence and lift investment, although the volatile political environment points to implementation risk," it said.

The government, earlier this month, opened the multi-brand retail chains to foreign investment, besides allowing foreign carriers to pick up stake in Indian aviation companies.

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Image: Workers hold iron rods at a construction site of a bridge on the river Tawi in Jammu.
Photographs: Mukesh Gupta/Reuters
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Fitch lowers India's growth forecast to 6%

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Besides, the government also hiked diesel prices by over Rs 5 a litre and capped the number of subsidised liquefied petroleum gas cylinders to 6 per family a year.

"Inflation pressures are likely to intensify following the government's long-awaited decision to hike diesel prices by 12 per cent in mid-September.

"The recent rebound in international crude oil prices means that the government may need to raise the prices of other energy-related items," Fitch said.

Experts have said that the hike in diesel prices would push up inflation by up to one percentage points.

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Image: A worker of a food superstore arranges price tags of the products inside a mall in the western Indian city of Ahmedabad.
Photographs: Amit Dave/Reuters
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Fitch lowers India's growth forecast to 6%

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"From a monetary perspective, elevated inflationary pressures suggest that the Reserve Bank of India may not be able to aggressively cut policy rates in the near term," it said.

Both the wholesale price index and the new consumer price index show inflation pressures have again accelerated.

WPI rose 7.55 per cent in August, up from 6.9 per cent in July and CPI grew 10 per cent during the month, up from 9.9 per cent during July.

Earlier this week, Standard & Poor's has lowered the growth forecast for India to 5.5 per cent for this fiscal, from 6.5 per cent projected earlier.


Image: Farmers transport wheat crop on camels at Pipalgaon village on the outskirts of Allahabad.
Photographs: Jitendra Prakash/Reuters

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