Taming inflation a top priority for South Asian countries: RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das

  • The RBI Governor was talking along the lines of the South Asian region's macroeconomic challenges and policy priorities at IMF conference on Friday

Livemint
Updated6 Jan 2023
Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Shaktikanta Das
Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Shaktikanta Das(AP)

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Shaktikanta Das said on Friday that taming inflation is the top priority for South Asian countries as risks to growth and investment outlook could rise if price pressures persist at high levels, 

Speaking at a conference organised by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Friday, the Governor was talking along the lines of the South Asian region's macroeconomic challenges and policy priorities, saying that policy challenges in the region have sharpened due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine.

"While the recent softening of commodity prices and supply chain bottlenecks should help in lowering inflation going ahead, risks to growth and investment outlook may rise if inflation persists at high levels," Das said.

As per the estimates of the IMF, the governor said the South Asian region contributed 15 per cent to global growth, led by India and Bangladesh.

Apart from inflation, RBI's Das said reducing external debt vulnerabilities, moving focus to high productive sectors, strengthening energy security, cooperation on greener economy and increasing tourism were key areas of focus for the region.

The government and the central bank are in discussion with South Asian countries to have cross-border trade in rupee. He also said the central bank digital currency (CBDC) is in trial phase and the RBI is moving very carefully and cautiously on digital rupee launch. After the successful launch of the wholesale pilot, the central bank on December 1, last year, began its retail CBDC pilot project.

(With inputs from agencies)

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