Indian economy likely to grow at 6% in FY24: Economists

New Delhi: India’s economy is likely to post a resilient 6% growth in FY24, an ET poll of 20 economists showed, easing slightly from 7% in FY23 because of softer global growth and higher interest rates.

The poll forecasts ranged from 5.2% to 6.3% with a median estimate of 6%. Despite the moderation, India will remain the fastest-growing major economy.

Growth is expected to bounce back to 6.5% in FY25, according to the economists polled.

“Continued domestic resilience and improving external metrics suggest India is on firmer ground,” said Rahul Bajoria of Barclays, projecting a 6.3% rise in the gross domestic product (GDP) in FY24.

Earlier this month, the RBI projected growth at 6.5% in FY24 while the International Monetary Fund (IMF) put it at 5.9%.

Inflation Forecast

“Strength in domestic demand and government’s thrust towards investment will be supportive of growth,” said Rajani Sinha, chief economist, pencilling in 6.1% GDP growth in FY24.The RBI hit pause on interest rate increases earlier this month after raising the key repo rate by 2.5 percentage points in 11 months as consumer inflation slipped to a 16-month low of 5.66% in March.

The ET poll suggested that inflation will fall within RBI’s inflation target band of 2-6% to 5.3% in FY24, which will also support demand. The consumer inflation forecasts ranged from 4.6-5.5%.

“Inflation is expected to moderate as falling commodity prices ease input price pressures, a likely robust rabi harvest and assumption of normal monsoon brings down food inflation, and base effect plays out,” Bajoria added.

RBI’s survey of professional forecasters had pegged India’s growth at 6% for FY24 and inflation at 5.3%.

Downside risks
Slower global growth will impact India’s economy, along with possibly rising crude prices.

The IMF expects the world economy to grow 2.8% in 2023 compared with 3.4% in 2022, with financing conditions being tightened to rein in the sharpest price rise in decades across many countries.

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