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Feb 12, 2013, 11.07 PM IST | Source: PTI

Committed to restrict FY'13 fiscal deficit at 5.3 pc: PM

Concerned over economic slowdown, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today said the government is committed to containing the fiscal deficit to 5.3 per cent of GDP this fiscal and various steps are being taken to revive economy, which include faster clearances to mega projects.

Concerned over economic slowdown, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today said the government is committed to containing the fiscal deficit to 5.3 per cent of GDP this fiscal and various steps are being taken to revive economy, which include faster clearances to mega projects.

Also read: Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management Act: Its aim

Addressing Conference of Governors, he said Indian economy has slowed down considerably in the last two years and the growth in this fiscal year will be much below the average growth of about 8 per cent that achieved in the last decade. "The factors that have caused this slowdown lie both outside and within our country. "It is imperative that we do everything possible to reverse this trend and the Government has made concerted and serious efforts in recent months to revive investment and growth," Singh said.

As per the latest estimates of Central Statistical Organisation (CSO), India's economic growth (GDP) is likely to slow down to 5 per cent this fiscal as against 6.2 per cent achieved last year.

However, Finance Minister P Chidambaram has exuded confidence of over 5.5 per cent economic growth in 2012-13. Stressing that large fiscal deficit has been a specific cause of concern, he said a fiscal consolidation roadmap has already been put in place to lower it gradually. "We intend to contain fiscal deficit at 5.3 per cent of GDP and reduce it to 4.8 per cent in the next year," he said. Singh further said efforts are being made to fast track investment proposals, with particular focus on clearances from the environment and forest angles as well as towards removal of infrastructural bottlenecks.

"However, the climate for investment is also affected by the activities of State Governments. Factors like the state of law and order, and how easy or difficult it is to acquire land and obtain electricity connections also have an important influence on the climate for investment," he said.

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