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TOP OF THE WORLD

Economists may scream GLOBAL RECESSION, but India is one of the strongest economies in the world today!

The world's strongest economy, the United States, sank into recession after 10 years of growth, which was the longest expansion on record since the end of the II World War. The global scenario has never been so depressed. Not since the crash of '29. IMF-World Bank forecasts say the US, EU and Japan may trigger a crash in world trade growth from 1.3% in 2000 to just 1% in 2001. Amid such devastation, even as some East Asian economies go into negative growth, India may end 2001 with 4.5%. That catapults us to the top slot, after China. And what's more, while China slows down from 7.5 to 7.1, India actually improves to 5.7.

Of 31 countries with a population of above 20 million, India had the fourth highest growth of GDP in purchasing power parity, after China, Korea and Thailand.

Is there a hidden resilience in the Indian economy?
Yashwant Sinha seems to think so. While exports drive the Big Three - US, Japan and Germany - agriculture drives the Indian economy. Much of the purchasing power comes from agriculture and allied activities. 70% of the people form the backbone of that power.

Apart from agriculture, the main contributor to India's stability is its policy of not allowing foreign investors to enter volatile areas such as real estate.

Says the latest IMF World Economic Outlook: 'India is relatively insulated from the global slowdown, given the nature of its IT sector (which is focused on services, where India remains highly cost-competitive) and its relatively closed economy'.

So can we turn on the music? No. The government may try to get maximum mileage out of this, but the fact remains, we under-utilize our potential. If we achieved half the potential, around 7.5%, we could become the fastest growing country by 2010.

Source: Outlook



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