‘Want to Im­prove on 3.2% Fis­cal Deficit’

The Economic Times - - Fi­nance & Com­modi­ties -

“If any­thing, I think in­ter­est rates will move south­wards,” the eco­nomic af­fairs sec­re­tary said.

Given the thrifty Bud­get math, the chances of the Re­serve Bank of In­dia cut­ting in­ter­est rates at the mon­e­tary pol­icy an­nounce­ment on Feb­ru­ary 8 have bright­ened, ex­perts have said.

“The Bud­get is strong on re­forms, built on strong macroe­co­nomic pa­ram­e­ters and also strong with re­gard to fis­cal num­bers,” Das said.

Jait­ley gave him­self more room on the fis­cal side than had been pledged but Das said this was a mar­ginal in­crease and could be even be clawed back.

“I would not look at it as a de­vi­a­tion from the fis­cal deficit path,” he said. “In­stead of 3% for three years, we have done 3.2% and 3%. We are mov­ing grad­u­ally in that di­rec­tion with a clear com­mit­ment that it will be 3% in 2018-19 and even dur­ing the cur­rent year it will be our en­deav­our to im­prove upon the fis­cal num­bers. We would like to im­prove on 3.2% — it all de­pends on what kind of rev­enues we get out of this huge amount of cash which has come into the sys­tem.”

Given the thrifty Bud­get math, the chances of a rate but by RBI at the mon­e­tary pol­icy on Feb­ru­ary 8 have bright­ened

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