Real GDP growth 2.5% lower than official: Ex-CEA Subramanian

-The Times of India

India's gross domestic product growth rate has been overstated by about 2.5 percentage points per year post 2011, former chief economic adviser Arvind Subramanian has said in a research paper, prompting economists to doubt the size of the claimed overestimation, and the government to defend the data .

Subramanian also called for revisiting the entire methodology and implementation for GDP estimation by an independent task force, comprising national and international experts.

"....instead of reported average growth of 6.9% between 2011 and 2016, actual growth was more likely to have been between 3.5% and 5.5%. Cumulatively, over five years, the level of GDP might have been overstated by about 9-21%," Subramanian said in his paper, published by the Center for International Development at Harvard University.

GDP growth
"This finding relates to averages over the 2011-16 period, which encompasses both the UPA-2 and NDA-2 governments. They do not speak of how this average over-estimation may have varied over time within the post-2011 period. At this stage, the data are not adequate to answer such granular questions," Subramaian, who was the chief economic adviser in the first Narendra Modi-led government, said.

"It is just a claim in a newspaper article. There may be some overestimation, but whether the overestimation is large or not is difficult to tell," Sudipto Mundle, distinguished fellow at the National Council of Applied Economic Research, told TOI. The new GDP methodology uses corporate data from the ministry of corporate affairs MCA-21 database, which some experts have said is flawed and needs a review.

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The Times of India, 12 June, 2019,

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