New Delhi: A United Nations (UN) body that serves as its main economic centre in Asia and the Pacific region projected India’s growth in 2012-13 at 5.9% but sees the economy rebounding in the next financial year.
“South and South-West Asian economies weathered the global financial crisis of 2008-2009 without suffering major disruptions and did well in 2010. However, the economic outlook for 2012 has been downgraded because of a general slowdown in economic activity,” the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN Escap) said in a report released on Thursday.
But it added that “there are indications that the sub-region is turning the corner and is likely to do better in 2013 with the Indian economy projected to grow at 6.8% in 2013-14.” It didn’t give a comparable figure for last year.
“India is on track to become the world’s second largest economy by 2050,” said Nagesh Kumar, chief economist at Escap, the regional development arm of the UN.
Kumar said that the unexploited potential of regional economic integration was the reason behind the region’s lag in terms of growth. “Fifty-seven percent of inter-regional trade potential remains unexploited in Saarc (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation),” he said.
Last week, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) slashed India’s growth projection to 4.9% for 2012 from its earlier projection of 6.2%, and for 2013 to 6% from 6.6%, despite the government’s recent rush of pro-growth policies.
India’s economy grew at 5.5% in the April-June quarter and many private economists predict a similar pace for the full financial year.