India’s economy is slowing down. New figures show the country’s GDP growth took a nosedive in the quarter ending September. According to the Central Statistics Organisation, India’s economy expanded 6.9% during the three-month period. In the previous quarter it grew 7.7%. Wednesday’s figures were in line with most expectations. Economists are predicting for the whole fiscal will hover around the 7% mark. Finance minister Pranab Mukherjee meanwhile tried to strike an optimistic note saying the numbers weren’t bad considering global conditions.
Here’s how those GDP numbers break up by sector. Manufacturing nudged ahead just 2.7%, while mining showed negative growth with a 2.9% drop. Crucially, agriculture expanded at 3.2% and electricity did even better, with a jump of 9.8%.
In other news, the Congress party has explicitly defended the government’s decision to allow foreign direct investment in the retail sector. On Wednesday party spokesperson Manish Tewari said the Congress supported the Prime Minister’s move. Meanwhile, the DMK, a crucial Congress ally in the UPA government has indicated its MPs will not vote against the decision if it is put to the test in Parliament. The opposition led by the BJP has been fighting the decision to bring in FDI in retail. On Tuesday, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had justified the move while addressing a Congress rally in Delhi. Significantly, party president Sonia Gandhi shared the stage with Singh while he made his speech.