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“We are heading into better times ahead and I would urge you to remain engaged in the future of this country with confidence and optimism,” the Prime Minister said at the Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, which is the annual Indian diaspora meet in New Delhi.
“Our economy has done well over the past decade. In the nine years since 2004, we averaged a healthy growth rate of 7.9 per cent per annum. There has been no doubt a slowdown in the recent past, and we will probably end this year at the same level as last year with 5 per cent growth,” he said.
Singh’s government has struggled to boost investment and tame elevated inflation even as Finance Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram has repeatedly said he’ll stick to deficit targets.
Singh said the ‘negative atmosphere’ is also amplified by the “political contestations in India, which are inevitably louder in the election season” that is now on the horizon.
Singh on Wednesday said despite challenges, India’s economic fundamentals remain strong.
“Our savings and investment rates are still over 30 per cent of our GDP and the entrepreneurial spirit in India is very much alive and kicking,” Singh said.