Thursday, May 14, 2009


If historical patterns are anything to go by, the voting in of the 15th Lok Sabha or the House of the People, the directly elected lower house of the Parliament of India, will mark a starting point for a sharp ramp-up in economic activity for the country. Economic activity, as measured by industrial production index, had increased immediately after five elections out of seven polls since 1984, as political stability provided a platform for economic growth.

Economic activity has risen consecutively following the last three elections held on 1998, 1999 and 2004. A comparison of industrial production (IP) data before elections and six months after elections, shows that on five occasions, the IP index rose by 20-80 basis points, according to data from Goldman Sachs Global ECS Research.

The Interim Budget for the financial year 2009-10 announced in February by the Finance Minister of the ruling United Progressive Alliance (UPA), focused on infrastructure development, easing of Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) norms and economic stimulus packages that set the ground for how the alliance was approaching the General Elections.

The new Government that comes in to power would be best served if it continued and augmented the “India Shining” policies that currently sustain a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth of more than 7% as India continues to defy negative GDP growth seen in many Western economies.
Such growth initiatives have led to an economic revival in key sectors like steel, cement, automobile, food and beverages and fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) (See Vol 4 | Issue 3 ‘Clearing The FDI Highway’) that are best not derailed.

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