India needs to shift gears to sustain a real economic growth rate of 8 per cent and achieve Prime Minister Narendra Modi's goal of making the country a $5-trillion economy by 2024-25, Chief Economic Adviser Krishnamurthy Subramanian said on Thursday. "We have been growing at a good rate. But we now need to be shifting gears to grow at 8 per cent continuously in a sustained manner. That is what this strategic blueprint is about," he said. Mr Subramanian was speaking at a press conference after the release of Economic Survey 2018-19, prepared by a team of economists led by him.
The Economic Survey "departs from traditional thinking by viewing the economy as being either in a virtuous or a vicious cycle, and thus never in equilibrium", he said.
The Economic Survey pegs real GDP or gross domestic product growth at 7 per cent for the financial year ending March 31, 2020. The growth - according to the annual document which typically provides a policy perspective for the Union Budget - is expected to pick up on higher private investment and robust consumption.
"With the micro-economic and macroeconomic foundations laid over the last five years, the Indian economy is ready to shift gears so that economic growth, jobs and exports can be pushed up to the next level. For this purpose, the Survey presents a blueprint," writes Mr Subramanian - the main author of the report.
The government's Economic Survey highlighted a challenge on the fiscal front following an economic slowdown impacting tax collections amid rising state expenditure on the farm sector.
The Survey however said the investment rate was expected to pick up following improvement in consumer demand and bank lending.