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Asserting that the Indian economy is showing signs of revival since the second covid wave peaked in May, the government on Monday said the country’s strong fundamentals and market size will continue to attract market-seeking greenfield investments.

Quoting the World Investment Report 2021, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman, in a written reply to the Lok Sabha, said FDI (foreign direct investment) inflows into India rose by 25.4% to reach $64 billion in 2020, from $51 billion in 2019, becoming the fifth largest recipient in the world in 2020, up from the eighth position it held in the previous year.

However, the greenfield projects announced in India contracted by 19% in 2020, she said, and added that this decline is significantly lower than the 44% decline in developing economies.

“As has been witnessed in overall FDI inflows, India’s strong fundamentals and market size will continue to attract market-seeking greenfield investments," she said.

With regard to the contraction of India’s gross domestic product (GDP) by 7.3% in 2020-21, Sitharaman said this reflects the unparalleled effect of the ‘once in a century’ covid-19 pandemic and the containment measures that were taken to control the pandemic.

The fundamentals of the economy remained strong as gradual scaling back of lockdowns, along with the astute support of Aatmanirbhar Bharat Mission placed the economy firmly on the path of recovery from the second half of FY21, she added.

According to the World Bank’s Global Economic Prospects June 2021, she said, global growth for 2021 has been revised upward to 5.6 %, largely due to the sharp rebound in major economies driven by continued vaccination and substantial fiscal support.

India is expected to grow at a significantly faster rate compared with the global average growth. The government of India is committed to accelerating the pace and expanding the scope of covid-19 vaccination throughout the country, she said and added that the average daily vaccination rate has doubled to 4.13 million doses in June compared with 1.93 million in May, subsequent to implementation of the revised national Covid Vaccination Policy since 21 June 2021.

India has now crossed the 38-crore mark in its cumulative covid vaccination coverage with 23% of the population covered under the first dose and 5.6% of the population fully vaccinated, she added.

The government of India on 28 June announced a stimulus package of 6,28,993 crore, the finance minister said in another reply.

The package aims to boost diverse sectors of the economy affected by covid-19 pandemic, she said and added that the government has announced a total of 17 measures in three broad categories —economic relief from the pandemic; strengthening public health, and impetus for growth and employment. The finance minister further said the CPI-Combined inflation in June 2021 was 6.26%, as against the average CPI-Combined inflation of 6.16% during 2020-21.

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