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Indian Economy: Growing Steadily

Strong economic growth in the first quarter of Financial Year 2023 helped India overcome the UK to become the fifth-largest economy after it recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic shock. Real GDP at constant prices (2011-12) in the first quarter of 2023–24 is estimated at Rs. 40.37 trillion (US$ 484.94 billion), showing a growth of 7.8% as compared to the first quarter of 2022-23 estimated at Rs. 37.44 trillion (US$ 449.74 billion). Given the release of pent-up demand and the widespread vaccination coverage, the contact-intensive services sector will probably be the main driver of development in 2022–2023. In 2023-24 (April-September), India’s service exports stood at US$ 164.89 billion.

Furthermore, India’s overall exports (services and merchandise) in 2023-24 (April-September) were estimated at US$ 376.29 billion. Rising employment and substantially increasing private consumption, supported by rising consumer sentiment, will support GDP growth in the coming months.

Future capital spending of the government in the economy is expected to be supported by factors such as tax buoyancy, the streamlined tax system with low rates, a thorough assessment and rationalisation of the tariff structure, and the digitization of tax filing. In the medium run, increased capital spending on infrastructure and asset-building projects is set to increase growth multipliers, and with the revival in monsoon and the Kharif sowing, agriculture is also picking up momentum. The contact-based services sector has largely demonstrated promise to boost growth by unleashing the pent-up demand over the period of April-December 2022. The sector’s success is being captured by a number of HFIs (High-Frequency Indicators) that are performing well, indicating the beginnings of a comeback.

India has emerged as the fastest-growing major economy in the world and is expected to be one of the top three economic powers in the world over the next 10-15 years, backed by its robust democracy and strong partnerships.

India’s appeal as a destination for investments has grown stronger and more sustainable as a result of the current period of global unpredictability and volatility, and the record amounts of money raised by India-focused funds in 2022 are evidence of investor faith in the “Invest in India” narrative.

India’s nominal gross domestic product (GDP) at current prices is estimated to be at Rs. 301.75 trillion (US$ 3.62 trillion) in 2023-24. Additionally, the Nominal GDP at current prices in Q1 of 2023-24 was Rs. 70.67 trillion (US$ 848.92 billion), as against Rs. 65.42 trillion (US$ 785.85 billion) in 2022-23, estimating a growth of 8%. With 115 unicorns valued at more than US$ 350 billion, as of February 2023, India presently has the third-largest unicorn base in the world. The government is also focusing on renewable sources by achieving 40% of its energy from non-fossil sources by 2030. India is committed to achieving the country’s ambition of Net Zero Emissions by 2070 through a five-pronged strategy, ‘Panchamrit’. Moreover, India ranked 3rd in the renewable energy country attractive index. Exports fared remarkably well during the pandemic and aided recovery when all other growth engines were losing steam in terms of their contribution to GDP. Going forward, the contribution of merchandise exports may waver as several of India’s trade partners witness an economic slowdown. According to Mr. Piyush Goyal, Minister of Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Textiles, Indian exports are expected to reach US$ 1 trillion by 2030.

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