As the economy continues to face the headwind of coronavirus, the Prime Minister’s Office is continuing its talks with the Finance Ministry to discuss ways to boost demand, help the economy, and assess the status of the Rs 21 lakh crore financial package which was announced days after coronavirus lockdown on 24 March 2020. The focus is on reviewing the overall economic conditions and the measures which can be taken further to boost the economy, The Indian Express reported. The PMO and the Finance Ministry continue to hold more meetings. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman have already met twice this week.
The government had earlier announced a financial relief package for the most vulnerable sections of the society such as farmers, migrant workers, street vendors and others such as MSME to help them tide over the crisis. PM Modi is now taking stock of the disbursement of the package. However, there is a growing demand now for a wider income support to help provide a demand stimulus. Another area of concern for the PMO remains the e-commerce policy regarding which officials from Ministries of Finance, Commerce, External Affairs, Electronics and Information Technology and other concerned departments met on Thursday. “The focus is on assessing economic situations and what possible measures may be required from September onwards. Aspects relating to e-commerce police are being looked into by the commerce ministry closely,” a government official said, the newspaper reported.
Meanwhile, various rating agencies continue to downgrade India GDP outlook, the latest one being ICRA which said that it is sharply reducing India GDP forecast for the ongoing financial year 2020-21 to 9.5% from earlier 5% in the backdrop of rising coronavirus cases and localised lockdowns. A steep economic contraction is also expected in the April-June quarter. The government has also discussed boosting its non-tax revenue by PSU stake sale. Economic activities came to a grinding halt after the government imposed a nationwide lockdown. However, the restrictions were eased in June.
Source : PTI