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RBI to revise GDP estimates

Special Correspondent

IMF global forecast will be taken into consideration

KOLKATA: The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is set to revise growth rate estimates for 2008-09, D. Subbarao, RBI Governor said.

Talking to reporters after meeting Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee at the State Secretariat on Wednesday, he said when the RBI had made its October announcements during the mid-term monetary policy review it had “estimated the 2008-09 growth rate at 7.5-8 per cent with a downside bias”.

However, since then, IMF had revised its global forecast along with revisions for the emerging economies. Taking a re-look at its October estimates, the IMF reduced the 2008 global growth rates from 3.9 per cent to 3.2 per cent, while reducing the 2009 figure from 3.7 per cent to 2.2 per cent. For emerging economies, the GDP [growth] rate was brought down from 6.1 per cent to 5.1 per cent. Dr. Subbarao said that reflecting these, the RBI would be “doing its own estimates” when it gets down to the exercise in end-January. “We will be doing our own numbers,” he said.

On his meeting with Mr. Bhattacharjee, he said he had come to meet the chief minister ahead of the December Board meeting of the RBI which would be held in the city on Thursday, as part of a tradition. “I took this opportunity of meeting him and he enquired about the global crisis and the outlook for India. Dr. Subbarao said that Mr. Bhattacharjee conveyed his concern about the stress being faced by the micro and small enterprises (MSEs), exporters, the IT and the steel sectors. “I have given him my assessment of the situation,” the RBI Governor said.

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