It’s official: India is fastest growing big economy

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Taken at face value, India on Monday became the fastest growing major economy in the world after its statisticians changed the way they measure Asia’s third-largest economy and showed it clocked faster growth than China in the December quarter.

It marks a dramatic turnaround for an economy that a fortnight ago was assumed to be struggling to gain momentum under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s reform-minded government. Prior to Modi’s election last May, the economy had endured its weakest phase of growth since the 1980s.

The statistical recovery is in large measure due to changes both in the way authorities calculate gross domestic product (GDP) and the base year.

Under the new method, the economy expanded 7.5 per cent year-on-year during the last quarter, higher than 7.3 per cent growth recorded by China in the latest quarter.

New Delhi also revised up growth for the first half of fiscal 2014/15 to 7.4 per cent from the 5.5 per cent reported earlier and forecast the full-year GDP growth to accelerate to 7.4 per cent from a revised 6.9 per cent a year earlier.

The new estimate is sharply higher than the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) growth projection of around 5.5 per cent for the year under the old method.

The reading has left economists confounded as it is at odds with other indicators such as industrial production, trade and tax collection figures, which suggest the economy is still suffering from slack.

“The government has itself been saying that tax collections are slow due to a slowdown in the economy, but the other wing of the government is saying that GDP growth has been good,” said A. Prasanna, economist at ICICI Securities Primary Dealership Ltd.

“That means either one part of the economy is not taxed or there is an issue with the data.”

India now measures GDP by market prices instead of factor costs, to take into account gross value addition in goods and services as well as indirect taxes. The base year has been shifted to 2011/12 from 2004/05 earlier.

The government’s statistics department says the new method is more in line with global practices and gives a better picture of economic activity.

But the statistical fog makes it harder for policymakers to assess the size of the fiscal and monetary aid required to help spur even faster growth needed to generate jobs for millions of young Indians entering the labour force.

POLICY CONUNDRUM

Monday’s data is key for Finance Minister Arun Jaitley as he drafts the annual budget.

Presenting the 2015/16 blueprint on Feb. 28, Jaitley is widely expected to boost capital spending and offer tax breaks to an under-performing manufacturing sector.

But with GDP data showing the economy suddenly motoring again, the fiscal stimulus could stoke inflation.

RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan, who switched the monetary policy to a new easing cycle in January with the first interest rate cut in 20 months, faces a similar dilemma; whether to lower interest rates again.

“After this number, the RBI will need to understand the dynamics of the high GDP numbers,” said Saugata Bhattacharya, chief economist at Axis Bank.

“This pushes back the timeline for rate cuts. Any hope of an off-cycle rate cut in March, even if the budget is consistent with low inflation-driven fiscal policy, does not exist now.”

“NOTHING HAS CHANGED”

Despite the statistical adjustments, India’s growth outlook has been bolstered by falling oil prices, cooling inflation and Modi’s steps to make it easier to do business.

Portfolio investors have pumped more than $7 billion so far this year into the country’s financial markets.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) last month also predicted India would overtake China next year as the fastest growing major economy with 6.5 per cent annual growth compared with 6.3 per cent for China.

However, listless corporate spending and mounting bad loans at Indian banks remain a drag.

While stressed corporate balance sheets are hindering a recovery in private capital spending, rising bad banking assets are making banks wary of lending to companies.

“There is clearly the need to look at the credibility associated with these numbers,” said Jyotinder Kaur, principal economist at HDFC Bank. “Nothing on the ground has substantially changed to show that we are out of the trenches.”

Source: http://ibnlive.in.com/news/its-official-india-is-fastest-growing-big-economy/527479-7.html

All New Asian Menu at Pune Restaurant Inside of JW Marriott Pune

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PUNE, INDIA – (Menafn – Marketwired via COMTEX) –Shakahari, a restaurant in Pune, located inside the JW MarriottHotel Pune, is known for its authentic vegetarian Indian cuisine andnow expands its borders to bring to all its foodies a Pan-Asian menu,specially crafted by Thai Expat Chef Pensiri Pattanachaen andExecutive Chef Ajmal Salim. The all new Shakahari threw its doorsopen to all on 25th September 2013.

The menu along with the Indian delicacies will now also include fourAsian cuisines like Thai, Malaysian, Cantonese and Japanese. Besidesthe signature set menus, the guests can also opt for a meal includingsix appetizers of the day from the EVO grill and hot kitchen. Theexclusive dessert room will feature Chef Ajmal’s signaturescrumptious selection of Asian and Indian desserts. Guest can alsorelish the array of salads and soups from the buffet, which will beaccessible for all guests, including the ones opting for the setmenu.

The new unrivaled cuisine at Shakahari will be truly a majesticexperience for vegetarians, as a large spread in different cuisineswill now be available all under one roof. The new menu will servespecially selected signature delicacies like Kratong Thong, Meang TaKhir, Pad Kra Paow, Nam Prik Noom et al by Chef Pensiri, as well asJapanese Roll, Kari Sayur Campur, Nasin Padang, and more, by our veryown Executive Chef Ajmal Salim. Other delicacies include the all timefavorites like Thai curry, Pad Thai, Broccoli with Spicy Black Beansauce, Cantonese Fried Rice, Hakka Noodles, Mee Goreng, JapaneseKansai Curry and many more delectable savories to satiate yourculinary cravings.

So come and indulge into tasty vegetarian dinners at the Pune JWMarriott Shakahari from 7:00pm-11:30pm. The buffet is priced at Rs900 inclusive of taxes for Adults and Rs.400 inclusive of taxes forkids from 5yrs to 12ys. For reservations please call: 91 20 6683 2348

About JW Marriott Pune JW Marriott Pune is the 3rd JW in India.Located centrally, the business hotel in Pune encompasses 416 roomsincluding 44 suites designed for the business and leisure traveler, abi-level Convention Centre and 12 flexible meeting, 7 F&B outlets andthe Quan Spa, a luxury hotel spa — the largest spa in West India. JWMarriott Pune strives towards continued innovation, luxury andexcellence. The bi level Convention Centre, 12 flexible meeting roomsthat offer about 40,000 square feet of exhibition space make thehotel a sought after option as far as significant conferences areconcerned. For those who want to have the perfect wedding thatmirrors their personality and dreams, JW Marriott Pune offers morethan 40,000 square feet of elegant, state-of-the-art, flexibleballroom area teamed together with excellent culinary creations fromthe hotel’s catering team.

About JW Marriott Hotels & Resorts JW Marriott is part of MarriottInternational’s luxury portfolio and consists of beautiful propertiesin gateway cities and distinctive resort locations around the world.These elegant hotels cater to today’s sophisticated, self-assuredtravelers, offering them the quiet luxury they seek in a warmlyauthentic, relaxed atmosphere lacking in pretense. JW Marriottproperties artfully provide highly crafted, anticipatory experiencesthat are reflective of their locale so that their guests have thetime to focus on what is most important to them. Currently, there are60 JW Marriott hotels in 24 countries; by 2016 the portfolio isexpected to encompass 88 properties in 31 countries.

Poovar Island Resort Trivandrum, India from US$86

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This 4-star resort in Puvar is centrally located. Only a short stroll from the shore, this relaxed resort is ideally located for those searching for a beach-side escape.

Guests of the the Poovar Island Resort Trivandrum can enjoy a drink in the on-site bar, sample Indian, Asian and local cuisine in the restaurant or relax in the outdoor pool. Fitness facilities are available on site, and guests can take advantage of the resort’s bike rental service. Also available at the Poovar Island Resort Trivandrum is a 24-hour front desk, offering luggage storage and an airport transfer service.

The well-equipped and modern rooms at the Poovar Island Resort Trivandrum have tea and coffee making facilities, a private bathroom and cable / satellite channels. Each offers a mini bar, a telephone and a hair dryer.

Hotel Taj View, Agra, India from US$41

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The Hotel Taj View features both a restaurant and a bar, where guests can relax at the end of the day. For those preferring to dine out, the surrounding neighborhood offers many bars and restaurants serving a choice of different cuisines. Room service is available any time of the day.

Agra Airport (AGR) is less than a 30-minute drive from the Hotel Taj View. Tours and other travel arrangements can be booked at the hotel’s tour desk.

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