The Indian economy grew by 4.1 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2021-22, pushing up the annual growth rate to 8.7 per cent, official data showed on Tuesday. However, growth in the January-March period was slower than the 5.4 per cent expansion in the previous October-December quarter of 2021-22.
The gross domestic product (GDP) had expanded by 2.5 per cent in the corresponding January-March period of 2020-21, according to data released by the National Statistical Office (NSO). As per the data, the economy expanded by 8.7 per cent in 2021-22 against a 6.6 per cent contraction in 2020-21.
The NSO, in its second advance estimate, had projected GDP growth during 2021-22 at 8.9 per cent. China had registered an economic growth of 4.8 per cent in the first three months of 2022.
Core sector output grows
Eight infrastructure sectors grew by 8.4 per cent in April against 62.6 per cent expansion in the year-ago period, according to official data released on Tuesday. The output of the eight infrastructure sectors of coal, crude oil, natural gas, refinery products, fertiliser, steel, cement and electricity had expanded by 4.9 per cent in March 2022.
The core sector had witnessed an exceptionally high growth rate of 62.6 per cent in April 2021 mainly due to the low base effect. The output of crude oil contracted by 0.9 per cent against a 2.1 per cent decline in April, the data showed.
Higher tax realisation helps fiscal deficit
Fiscal deficit for 2021-22 improved to 6.71 per cent of the GDP over the revised budget estimate of 6.9 per cent mainly on account of higher tax realisation. Unveiling the revenue-expenditure data of the Union government for 2020-21, the Controller General of Accounts (CGA) said that the fiscal deficit in the absolute terms was Rs 15,86,537 crore (provisional).
The Finance Ministry in February had estimated the deficit at Rs 15,91,089 crore or 6.9 per cent of GDP. According to the data, the tax receipts during the fiscal were at Rs 18.2 lakh crore as against the revised estimates (RE) of Rs 17.65 lakh crore. The total expenditure too was higher at Rs 37.94 lakh crore against the RE of Rs 37.7 lakh crore presented to Parliament on February 1, 2021.
The CGA further said the revenue deficit at the end of the fiscal was 4.37 per cent for fiscal 2021-22. In another set of data, the CGA said the fiscal deficit during the first month of 2022-23 was 4.5 per cent of the Budget Estimate for the current fiscal. The deficit was 5.2 per cent in the year-ago period.
The government expects the fiscal deficit for the current financial year at 6.4 per cent of GDP or Rs 16.61 lakh crore. In April 2022, there was a revenue surplus of Rs 591 crore. Government meets its fiscal deficit from market borrowings.
With agency inputs