India needs $500 bn for core sector in next five years: PM

November 9th, 2008 - 5:25 pm ICT by IANS  

img src=” Singh/42087.jpg” hspace=”5″ vspace=”5″ alt=”Manmohan Singh” title=”Manmohan Singh” align=”right” Muscat (Oman), Nov 9 (IANS) India needs over $500 billion in investments over the next five years for infrastructure development, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said here Sunday.”India is undergoing a major transformation. Our economy is expanding rapidly,” Singh said at a gathering of the Indian diaspora in Oman at the Indian embassy here.

“We are laying particular focus on the development of our agriculture and the rural areas. Our financing requirements for the building of massive infrastructure in the next five years are estimated at over $500 billion,” he said.

The prime minister said that with new opportunities for youth emerging every day, the government has embarked on the “largest education, social welfare, skill development and employment generation programmes in the history of our country”.

Regarding the current global financial crisis, Singh said India’s growth rate might come down somewhat in the next five years.

“However, we still hope to achieve a growth rate of seven to seven and a half percent next year. The fundamentals of the Indian economy are very strong,” he said.

“Our banking system and financial institutions are well capitalised and their depositors are wholly secure. I have constituted a high-level committee to monitor the evolving global situation and suggest short-term and long-term measure to use this opportunity to further accelerate our growth,” he added.

Earlier in the day, speaking at a gathering of Indian and Omani businessmen here, Singh said India’s young demographic profile would help its economy.

“Our domestic savings rate is 35 percent of our GDP and our investment rate is 37 percent of our GDP,” he stressed.

“Our young demographic profile will lead to a further increase in these rates of savings and investment over the coming years,” he said.

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