[Economy] Economic Survey 2014-15 highlights

Following are the highlights of Economic Survey 2014-15 presented by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in Parliament :
  • GDP growth seen at 8.1–8.5 per cent in 2015-16 
  • Double digit growth trajectory; 8–10 per cent GDP in coming years 
  • Inflation shows declining trend during April-December 
  • Current Account Deficit (CAD) to decline to about 1 per cent in 2015-16 
  • To adhere to fiscal deficit target of 4.1 per cent of GDP; to aim for 3 per cent 
  • Committed to fiscal consolidation; to enhance revenue generation 
  • More reforms on anvil; Goods and Services Tax, expanding direct benefit transfers to be game-changers 
  • Foodgrains production for 2014-15 estimated at 257.07 million tonnes; will exceed last 5-year average by 8.5 million tonnes 
  • NITI Aayog, 14th Finance Commission to enhance fiscal federalism 
  • External Sector returning to strength, resilience 
  • Need balance between ‘Make in India’ and ‘Skilling India’ 
  • Services sector negotiations at WTO crucial for India in removing many market access barriers 
  • Revitalise PPP model to revive investment 
  • Manufacturing and services equally important for growth 
  • Consumer inflation in 2015-16 to be between 5-5.5%
  • Lower inflation opens up space for more monetary easing 
  • There is scope for big bang reforms 
  • Labour, capital, land, market reform and skills to be engines of growth 
  • JAM Trinity — Jan Dhan Yojana, Aadhaar, Mobile — to help transfer of funds to poor without leakage 
  • Shield domestic industry to promote ‘Make In India’ 
  • Borrowings to fund investment, not for meeting expenses 
  • Food subsidy bill in April-Jan up 20% to Rs 1.08 lakh cr
  • Reform Railway’s structure, commercial practices, overhaul of technology
  • Public investment key growth engine in short-run for Railways, but not a substitute for private investment
  • More disinvestments on the anvil in current fiscal
  • Under-recoveries on petroleum products to come down to Rs 74,664 crore in 2014-15, from Rs 1.39 lakh crore in FY14 
  • 4Ds — Deregulation, Differentiation, Diversification, Disinter (better bankruptcy laws) — to push financial sector growth 
  • Implementation of GST to boost GDP, exports 
  • Suggests medium to long term fiscal policy to target deficit, expenditure 
  • Global commodity prices to remain weak in 2015 
  • Ecommerce sector to witness 50% growth in 5 years

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