Amid Slowing Growth, RBI's Rs 1.76 Lakh-Crore Payout To Government: 10 Points

RBI surplus transfer: The transfer of surplus and excess dividend is in line with the recommendations of the Bimal Jalan Committee.

The RBI will transfer 1.76 lakh crore to government, as its board accepted Jalan panel recommendations


  • RBI Central Board accepts Bimal Jalan panel recommendations
  • Record payout set to boost government finances, aid fiscal consolidation
  • In Budget, government estimated RBI dividend payment at Rs 90,000 crore
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Monday approved a payout of Rs 1.76 lakh crore to the government from its surplus and reserves, after an expert committee chaired by former Governor Bimal Jalan made its recommendations to the central bank. The record transfer, including a surplus of Rs 1.23 lakh crore for 2018-19, will boost the government's finances at a time it strives to tackle a nearly five-year low economic growth with lakhs of estimated job cuts across sectors, and defend its ambitious target of containing fiscal deficit at 3.3 per cent of the GDP. Economists say the payout will likely help the government meet its tax revenue shortfall and fund higher spending.

Here are 10 things to know about the RBI's record transfer to the government:

  1. The transfer will include Rs. 52,640 crore from its surplus capital, whereas the dividend includes Rs 28,000 crore already transferred to the government in February this year.

  2. The transfer of surplus and excess dividend is in line with the recommendations of the Bimal Jalan Committee, which was tasked to review the Economic Capital Framework of the RBI.

  3. The RBI payout is much larger than government estimates. In its Budget for the financial year 2019-20, the government has estimated a dividend payment of Rs 90,000 crore from the RBI.

  4. The RBI's move comes days after the government announced a range of measures, including an immediate injection of Rs 70,000 crore into state-run banks, instead of spreading it over the year ending March 2020 as announced in Budget, to push growth in the sector.

  5. The RBI pays dividends to the government every year, based on the profits from its investments and printing of notes and coins. It will release its balance sheet as part of its annual report later this week.

  6. Over the past couple of years, the Finance Ministry has been seeking higher payouts, arguing the central bank is holding more capital than it needs.

  7. Governor Shaktikanta Das, who chaired the RBI's 578th board meeting on Monday, had earlier said that it is the government's prerogative to decide on the usage of the surplus and dividend payout.

  8. In a presentation divided into 32 slides and six sections on Friday, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced a withdrawal of higher taxes on foreign portfolio investors and the surcharge on long- and short-term capital gains, in a bid to lift investor sentiment and push growth.

  9. The government is due to release GDP data for the quarter ended June 30 on Friday. According to a poll by news agency Reuters, the economic growth is expected to have slowed to a more than five-year low of 5.7 per cent in the June quarter.

  10. The RBI this month lowered its GDP growth projection for 2019-20 to 6.9 per cent, from 7 per cent forecast in June. Several economists have also lowered their growth projections for the economy.