World Bank said India can grow at 6.4% in 2015 and accelerate further next year, but cautioned that an enduring “bias” on the basis of caste and other factors can impede prosperity.
The government, however, is well aware of this issue and the World Bank sees India as “a bright spot in an otherwise mediocre global economic outlook,” the multilateral lending agency’s President Jim Yong Kim said here. “Indian society has an enduring exclusion that is based, among other things, on caste identities. This bias can impede shared prosperity, serving as a basis for discrimination in many spheres, including in employment and other markets, as well as in public services,” he said.
Speaking at the Vibrant Gujarat summit, inaugurated today by Modi, the World Bank chief said that there is much reason for optimism among investors, entrepreneurs and CEOs thinking of doing business in Gujarat and the country as a whole. “According to our projections, its (India’s) economy is expected to grow 6.4% this year and even faster in 2016, he said.
He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government are quickly putting in place the building blocks for even more rapid growth, streamlining the national regulatory structure, using public funds more efficiently, and promoting social inclusion. After slowing to sub-five% growth in the previous two financial years, the economy has started showing signs of pick-up as it expanded by 5.7% and 5.3% in the second and third quarter of 2015.