Finance Minsiter Arun Jaitley on Tuesday reiterated that India, which has been world’s fastest growing large economy in the last three year, is undergoing some challenges due to structural changes for some time, but will benefit in the medium and long-term. Stating that India’s macroeconomic fundamentals are strong, the Finance Minister also that the government was ready to work on the need to boost the macroeconomic fundamentals with an aim to maintain India’s status as the high-growth economy.
“I had earlier said that we will appropriately respond to situations as they develop,” Arun Jaitley said while addressing a press conference on Tuesday. “We have deliberated on the way ahead to work to boost the economic fundamentals on the basis of country’s potential,” he added without elaborating. The press conference by Arun Jaitley is currently underway.
India’s GDP growth disappointed for the second straight quarter, slowing down to a mere 5.7% in Ap-Jun and pitting the country behind China on the list of world’s fastest-growing major economies. The 5.7% fiscal first-quarter GDP growth was much lower than the 7.1% seen in the same quarter a year ago, and from 6.1% in the preceding quarter. Much of the blame for this was put on the twin effects of GST and demonetisation.
Of late, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s NDA-led government has come under fire from not only the members of the opposition, but also BJP’s own senior leaders including Subramanian Swamy, Yashwant Sinha, Arun Shourie and others. Yashwant Sinha, former Finance Minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee administration, even wrote a column in The Indian Express criticising the government’s radical moves such as demonetisation and implementation of GST.
However, Arun Jaitley continuously clarified that India was under a structural transformation under the new government, and that the issues hurting the economy in the near term would be addressed. “Some people have made politics of doom as their principle agenda… India in the current global situation is doing very well,” Arun Jaitley had said earlier this month, adding that it’s probably for the first time that India has been the fastest growing major economy for three straight years. “Structural reforms may involve a phase of transformation,” Arun Jaitley said.