Need to take manufacturing growth rate to double digits: Chidambaram

February 29th, 2008 - 6:41 pm ICT by admin  

A file-photo of P. Chidambaram

New Delhi, Feb 29 (IANS) The growth rate of Indian manufacturing needs to be pushed to double digits though the sector has been affected by rupee appreciation and high interest rates, Finance Minister P. Chidambaram said Friday. “The decline has been somewhat sharp in the case of consumer goods, especially consumer durables. The silver lining is that the growth in capital goods is still very high at 20.2 percent, indicating that industry continues to make huge capital investments and has a positive outlook about the future,” the minister said while presenting the national budget for 2008-09 at the Lok Sabha.

“Among the reasons for the moderation are a rise in interest rates and the appreciation of the rupee. There are limits to monetary policy accommodation, especially when the need is to maintain price stability.”

“However, some steps can be taken on the fiscal side… Our goal is to take the manufacturing growth rate to a double digit.”

Manufacturing industries that have grown slower than the average include food products, cotton textiles, textiles including apparel, paper and transport equipment, Chidambaram said.

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