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India can bounce back to high growth mode by 2020: Pranab
January, 07th 2012

Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Friday said India's strong fundamentals would help the country bounce back to a high growth trajectory by 2020.

Inaugurating the three-day international conference of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI), Mr. Mukherjee expressed confidence that the nation's strengths such as rate of investment that was 37 per cent of GDP, savings rate of 35 per cent, technically competent professionals and managers and the demographic dividend would help it overcome challenges and register high growth.

Mr. Mukherjee said the Eurozone crisis and slow recovery from the recession in other parts of the world had also affected India. I cannot claim that we have been insulated from the adverse impact that is affecting the developed, developing and under-developed economies.

Pointing out that though India was hoping to register a 9 per cent growth with a margin of plus or minus 25 percentage points in GDP during 2011-12, Mr. Mukherkee said it could not happen because of the Eurozone crisis.

The Finance Minister anticipated a fiscal deficit that was higher than projections for 2011-12. Noting that India's fiscal deficit rose to 6.6 per cent at the peak of the recession in 2008-09, he said it had been brought down to 4.7 per cent in 2010-11. But unfortunately, the fiscal deficit may be a little more in 2011-12 than projected at the time of the budget, he said.

Mr. Mukherjee urged the ICAI fraternity to play the role of a watchdog in ensuring compliance with financial probity and propriety, engage in the upcoming areas of reforms in urban and local bodies and accounting for NGOs and disseminate best practices in ensuring welfare schemes reached the desired beneficiaries. The role of the accountants was also critical in the fight against corruption and misdemeanour, he said.

The Finance Minister also expressed solidarity with those affected by the cyclone Thane'. He later released a souvenir by handing over the first copy to G. Ramaswamy, ICAI President.

M. Veerappa Moily, Union Minister of Corporate Affairs, said the Centre proposed to bring out a National Competition Policy by March. Drafts of the proposal had been given to Chief Ministers for their feedback on the policy which could be the most important reform since liberalisation, Mr. Moily said.

A Bill of Corporate Governance is also expected to be introduced in Parliament and passed by both Houses in the upcoming budget session, Mr. Moily said.

K. Rahman Khan, Deputy Chairman, Rajya Sabha, T. Karthikeyan, ICAI Secretary, and Jaydeep Shah, ICAI Vice-President, also participated.

The ICAI awards for excellence in financial reporting' were also presented on the occasion.

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