Strong economic growth in the first quarter of FY23 helped India overcome the UK to become the fifth-largest economy after it recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic shock. Real GDP at constant prices (2011-12) in the first quarter of 2023–24 is estimated at Rs. 40.37 trillion (US$ 484.94 billion), showing a growth of 7.8% as compared to the first quarter of 2022-23 estimated at Rs. 37.44 trillion (US$ 449.74 billion). Given the release of pent-up demand and the widespread vaccination coverage, the contact-intensive services sector will probably be the main driver of development in 2022–2023. In 2023-24 (April-September), India’s service exports stood at US$ 164.89 billion. Furthermore, India’s overall exports (services and merchandise) in 2023-24 (April-September) were estimated at US$ 376.29 billion. Rising employment and substantially increasing private consumption, supported by rising consumer sentiment, will support GDP growth in the coming months.
Future capital spending of the government in the economy is expected to be supported by factors such as tax buoyancy, the streamlined tax system with low rates, a thorough assessment and rationalisation of the tariff structure, and the digitization of tax filing. In the medium run, increased capital spending on infrastructure and asset-building projects is set to increase growth multipliers, and with the revival in monsoon and the Kharif sowing, agriculture is also picking up momentum. The contact-based services sector has largely demonstrated promise to boost growth by unleashing the pent-up demand over the period of April-December 2022. The sector's success is being captured by a number of HFIs (High-Frequency Indicators) that are performing well, indicating the beginnings of a comeback.
India has emerged as the fastest-growing major economy in the world and is expected to be one of the top three economic powers in the world over the next 10-15 years, backed by its robust democracy and strong partnerships.
India's appeal as a destination for investments has grown stronger and more sustainable as a result of the current period of global unpredictability and volatility, and the record amounts of money raised by India-focused funds in 2022 are evidence of investor faith in the "Invest in India" narrative.
India’s nominal gross domestic product (GDP) at current prices is estimated to be at Rs. 301.75 trillion (US$ 3.62 trillion) in 2023-24. Additionally, the Nominal GDP at current prices in Q1 of 2023-24 was Rs. 70.67 trillion (US$ 848.92 billion), as against Rs. 65.42 trillion (US$ 785.85 billion) in 2022-23, estimating a growth of 8%. With 115 unicorns valued at more than US$ 350 billion, as of February 2023, India presently has the third-largest unicorn base in the world. The government is also focusing on renewable sources by achieving 40% of its energy from non-fossil sources by 2030. India is committed to achieving the country's ambition of Net Zero Emissions by 2070 through a five-pronged strategy, ‘Panchamrit’. Moreover, India ranked 3rd in the renewable energy country attractive index.
According to the McKinsey Global Institute, India needs to boost its rate of employment growth and create 90 million non-farm jobs between 2023 to 2030 in order to increase productivity and economic growth. The net employment rate needs to grow by 1.5% per annum from 2023 to 2030 to achieve 8-8.5% GDP growth between same time period. India's current account deficit (CAD) decreases to US$ 9.2 billion in Q1 of 2023-24 from US$ 17.9 billion in Q1 of 2022–2023.
Exports fared remarkably well during the pandemic and aided recovery when all other growth engines were losing steam in terms of their contribution to GDP. Going forward, the contribution of merchandise exports may waver as several of India’s trade partners witness an economic slowdown. According to Mr. Piyush Goyal, Minister of Commerce and Industry, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Textiles, Indian exports are expected to reach US$ 1 trillion by 2030.
India is primarily a domestic demand-driven economy, with consumption and investments contributing to 70% of the economic activity. With an improvement in the economic scenario and the Indian economy recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic shock, several investments and developments have been made across various sectors of the economy. According to World Bank, India must continue to prioritise lowering inequality while also putting growth-oriented policies into place to boost the economy. In view of this, there have been some developments that have taken place in the recent past. Some of them are mentioned below.
Over the years, the Indian government has introduced many initiatives to strengthen the nation's economy. The Indian government has been effective in developing policies and programmes that are not only beneficial for citizens to improve their financial stability but also for the overall growth of the economy. Over recent decades, India's rapid economic growth has led to a substantial increase in its demand for exports. Besides this, a number of the government's flagship programmes, including Make in India, Start-up India, Digital India, the Smart City Mission, and the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation, is aimed at creating immense opportunities in India. In this regard, some of the initiatives taken by the government to improve the economic condition of the country are mentioned below:
In the second quarter of FY24, the growth momentum of the first quarter was sustained, and high-frequency indicators (HFIs) performed well in July and August of 2023. India's comparatively strong position in the external sector reflects the country's generally positive outlook for economic growth and rising employment rates. India ranked 5th in foreign direct investment inflows among the developed and developing nations listed for the first quarter of 2022.
India's economic story during the first half of the current financial year highlighted the unwavering support the government gave to its capital expenditure, which, in 2023-24, stood 37.4% higher than the same period last year. In the budget of 2023-24, capital expenditure took lead by steeply increasing the capital expenditure outlay by 37.4 % in BE 2023-24 to Rs.10 lakh crore (US$ 120.12 billion) over Rs. 7.28 lakh crore (US$ 87.45 billion) in RE 2022-23. The ratio of revenue expenditure to capital outlay increased by 1.2% in the current year, signalling a clear change in favour of higher-quality spending. Stronger revenue generation because of improved tax compliance, increased profitability of the company, and increasing economic activity also contributed to rising capital spending levels.
Since India’s resilient growth despite the global pandemic, India's exports climbed at the second-highest rate with a year-over-year (YoY) growth of 8.39% in merchandise exports and a 29.82% growth in service exports till April 2023. With a reduction in port congestion, supply networks are being restored. The CPI-C inflation reduction from June 2022 already reflects the impact. In September 2023 (Provisional), CPI-C inflation was 5.02%, down from 7.01% in June 2022. With a proactive set of administrative actions by the government, flexible monetary policy, and a softening of global commodity prices and supply-chain bottlenecks, inflationary pressures in India look to be on the decline overall.