Economy: Main Constituents
Agriculture sector or otherwise known as the ‘primary sector’ comprises agriculture and allied activities like crop production, horticulture, plantation crops, farm mechanization, land development and reclamation, digging of wells, tube wells and irrigation projects, forestry, construction of cold storages and warehouses, processing of agri-products, finance to agri-input dealers, allied activities like dairy, fisheries, poultry, sheep-goat, piggery and rearing of silk worms.
Industrial sector or the Secondary sector consists mainly of mining and quarrying; manufacturing and electricity; gas and supply.
The services sector or the tertiary sector includes trade, hotels, restaurants, transport storage and communication; financing, insurance, real estate and business services; community, social and personal services and construction.
Gross Domestic Product(GDP)
According to the Central Statistical Organisation (CSO), the Indian economy recorded a real GDP growth of 8.0 per cent in the second quarter of 2005-06.
When an economy grows at, say 5 %, it implies that the average growth of the 3 sectors within the economy, namely agriculture, industrial and services are growing at an average rate of 5%.
The data by CSO says that, the agricultural growth in real terms during the second quarter (July-September) of 2005-06, is 2.0; industrial sector 7.6 and tertiary sector 9.8.
The slow growth of the primary sector has been mainly attributed to the weak monsoons.
Business Expectation: A digression
Business expectation surveys suggest that the current phase of industrial activity is likely to continue in the near future. According to the Reserve Bank’s latest Industrial Outlook Survey, the Business Expectations Index for January-March 2006 quarter increased by 2.4 per cent over the previous quarter. Survey results indicate that employment, selling prices, imports and profit margins are expected to improve during the quarter January-March 2006 vis-à-vis October-December 2005.
What the ‘growth’ comprises
The area under kharif crops was 1.2 per cent higher than a year ago, led by increased area under rice, maize, pulses and sugarcane. As regards rabi crops, the area coverage as on January 2, 2006 was 1.5 per cent higher than a year ago on account of increased coverage in respect of major crops such as wheat and rapeseed.
The mining and electricity sectors, on the other hand, recorded a deceleration. The sharp slowdown in the mining sector may be attributable in part to a decline in production of crude oil caused by the break-out of fire in the Mumbai-High oil field in July 2005 and the adverse impact of heavy rainfall on coal mining activities. Lower growth in the electricity sector is attributable to shortage of coal and gas.
Robust growth in the cellular subscriber base broadband connections supported the strong growth in the communication sector.
Sustained growth in bank deposits and non-food credit as well as increased exports of information technology enabled services boosted the sub-sector ‘financing, insurance, real estate and business services’.
These are some of the reasons mentioned by the RBI for the growth in real GDP.
Agencies like ADB, CII, CRISIL, NCAER, IMF and RBI have projected the Real Gross Domestic Product for India during 2005-06 to be over and around 7.0. This reflects a bright prospect for the people of India. Is it so?
Link: The Hindu
The current GDP rate is exuberating and so are the projections. All the hype is on the growth rate. The politicians’ rhetoric is that India is growing as its GDP is rising. The agricultural sector is weak, structurally. More reason to be worried is because of the fact that more than 50% of the Indian populace are dependent on agriculture for their livelihood. The number of farmer suicides in Vidarbha and even in highly literate states like Kerala, speaks of discontentment. Relying only on the GDP and expecting the ‘trickle down effects’ to comply is nonsensical. Even if the high rates of GDP brought forth positive externalities, the time lag required for ‘these benefits’ to reach the masses would be large.
It is a commendable and laudable fact that India is improving it’s IT related exports. IT sector definitely seems resplendent.
Even if ‘trickle down effects’ ensued, all the benefits have gone to the middle class sector. More people are becoming better off with this sector.
The main concern is that of sustaining the realised growth of services and improving upon the primary and secondary sectors. The issue of ‘sustainable development’ should be our main concern. Lop sided development cannot be sustainable in the long run. Therefore, resting on a weak agricultural base is dangerous.
1) RBI: Third Quarter Review 2005-06, The Real Economy .