Despite GDP recording its slowest growth during the March quarter of 2021-22 at 4.1 per cent, Chief Economic Adviser V Anantha Nageswaran said on Tuesday that it is “better than what was expected”.
Addressing a virtual press conference, Mr Nageswaran said that the 4.1 per cent growth during January-March quarter of 2021-22 was “better than what was expected, especially because of concerns about the Omicron Wave in January”.
The Chief Economic Adviser acknowledged that inflationary pressures are high, mainly due to import price pressures. Also, global crude oil prices are inching towards the $120 a barrel mark again, he noted.
Though India is not unaffected by global inflationary pressures, it is better placed compared to several developed economies, Mr Nageswaran added.
At the same time he said that food production is expected to register a 1.2 per cent growth and there are adequate food grain stocks to ensure food security.
The Chief Economic Adviser said that with good monsoon expected this year, rural demand likely to go up.
The January-March quarter expansion was the weakest in the previous fiscal year. It is lesser than the 5.4 per cent growth seen during the December quarter of 2021-22.
At the same time, the 4.1 per cent growth in March quarter of 2021-22 is an expansion over the meagre 1.6 per cent growth seen during the fourth quarter of 2020-21.
Incidentally, the economic growth during the entire fiscal of 2021-22 has gradually spiralled downwards with each quarter.
In the first quarter of 2021-22, the economic growth had been a stupendous 20.1 per cent, which however was mainly due to the low base effect.
In the second quarter it was 8.4 per cent, while it was 5.4 per cent in third quarter. Now for the fourth quarter it has slid down to 4.1 per cent.