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India to grow at 7.3% in 2021: UN report


Despite a decline of 9.6 per cent in 2020 due to the lockdowns imposed by the Union government to contain the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Indian economy is expected to register a growth of 7.3% in 2021. This is according to a report titled World Economic Situation and Prospects 2021 released by the United Nations (UN).

The global economy shrank by 4.3% in 2020, which is two-and-a-half time more than the decline during the global financial crisis of 2009. It is likely to recover 4.7% in 2021.

Outlook for 2021

The report provides that economic  growth  in  South  Asia  in  2021  will  be  insufficient,  at  6.9  per  cent,  to  make  up  for  the  losses  of  2020,  as  pandemic  hotspots  re-emerge  and,  increasingly,  the  ability  of governments to deal with the multitude of challenges gets exhausted.

“While trade, remittances and investment are expected to pick up in 2021, as much of the global economy moves towards recovery from the widespread lockdown, investment and domestic consumption  in  many  South  Asian  countries  will  nevertheless  remain  subdued  owing  to  the  continuing threat of the pandemic and the scarring effects of the crisis.”

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“Regional economic growth for 2022 is forecast at 5.3 per cent, which would allow South Asia to finally exceed its 2019 economic output, albeit only marginally. On the other hand, South Asian countries that  are  relatively  more  exposed  to  global  economic  conditions,  such  as  Bangladesh  and  Maldives  with  their  high  share  of  foreign  trade  and  Nepal  with  its  dependence  on  tourism  and remittances, will enjoy a stronger rebound, of about 10 per cent growth in 2021.”

“Other countries in the region will experience economic growth ranging from 3.1 per cent (Sri Lanka) to 7.3 per cent (India),” the report provides.

Great disruption

The report says, “The short-term economic costs of the Great Disruption do not fully account for its long-term impacts on employment, productivity and potential output. While large-scale fiscal stimulus prevented total economic collapse and supported the incomes of millions of households, there is little sign that these measures will boost long-term investments and create new jobs.”

“Unless investments in physical and human capital pick up, the world economy will likely adjust to a lower growth trajectory.”  


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