India's GDP estimated to grow at 6.5%, that's a four-year low

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Last year the GDP growth came in at 7.1 percent for the full financial year.

Briefing media persons here on Friday, Chief Statistician T C A Anant said that the next two quarters of the financial year will have a GDP growth of 7 per cent which will be better than the first two quarter of the fiscal.

The Central Statistics Office (CSO) will be releasing the first advance estimates of India's Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth for 2017-18 at around 5.30 pm today.

The estimate of national income for 2017-18 released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO), the GDP at constant (2011-12) prices for 2017-18 is likely to attain a level of Rs 129.85 lakh crore.

More than GVA at constant prices, GVA for agriculture and allied activities at current prices slumped from nine per cent in 2016-17 to 2.8 per cent in 2017-18, which means farm product prices grew a mere 0.7 per cent in 2017-18 as against a rise of 4.1 per cent in 2016-17. "GDP growth of 6.5% for 2017-18 implies growth of 7% for the second half", economic affairs secretary Subhash Chandra Garg tweeted.

The Indian economy is forecast to grow at its slowest in four years in FY18 but is expected to pick up pace in the second half of the year. GVA growth for construction is estimated at 3.6 per cent, up from 1.7 per cent a year ago, the CSO's advance estimate showed.

Earlier, the country's GDP growth for the second quarter of the current fiscal ended September 30 was 6.3% - up from 5.7% reported during the first quarter of 2017-18.

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"Agriculture growth rate slips to 2.1 per cent from 4.5 per cent previous year".

The nominal GDP will be used as the benchmark for most indices in the 2018-19 budget to be presented by finance minister Arun Jaitley on 1 February.

Global rating agency Standard and Poor's had kept the growth outlook for India "stable" and rated the world's third-largest economy 'BBB-' in its latest report in November. The growth of real Gross Value Added (GVA) in 2017-18 is anticipated at 6.1 per cent as against 6.6 per cent in the previous year. On other hand, a higher real GDP growth could well be an indicator about GST's minimal impact on prices of goods and services.

The advance estimates have, however, been compiled on the basis of actual data of the last seven months (April-October) in the fiscal 2017-18 and extrapolated for the next five months (November-March) on the basis of that.

The CSO forecast comes three weeks before the Modi government comes out with its final full-year budget before the general election due in May 2019.

"Accordingly, the advance estimates for GDP and GVA growth appear to be understating economic expansion for FY2018, in our view".

"Given the tepid growth estimates from agriculture, it gives us a feeling that the budget 2018 will have a higher focus on agriculture and rural economy".

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