It is a year since the fall of Lehman Brothers and the global
financial crisis that followed. Even as pundits in the West debate
on whether the recession is over or whether the green-shoots of
recovery are emerging, India already appears to be back on the path
to growth. If the official figures are to be believed, India is
expected to clock between 6 - 6.5% growth in 2010.
Whilst the Indian economy did not suffer as heavily as other
countries in the wake of the global financial meltdown, largely due
to the fact that India's financial system was not directly
exposed to the toxic and distressed assets of the developed world,
it was not completely immune to the repercussions felt around the
world. There was undoubtedly a deceleration of growth in India.
Export led industries like textiles, IT services, gems and
jewellery, in the main, took a beating. As capital flows began
drying up, there was a fall in foreign portfolio investments and
foreign direct investment in India. But all was not lost. Lower
international commodity prices, led by plummeting crude prices
reduced India's import bill during the last year. As the world
economic leaders came to terms with the larger issues related to
structural and systemic questions, India's woes were
predominantly sentiment driven. Fears driven by a slumping world
economy were fuelled by India's own 9/11 in the wake of the
atrocious terrorist attacks in November 2008. The Indian economy
has been looking for a silver lining in every passing dark cloud
and the sketchy signs of recovery emerging from the developed world
have brought the bounce back to the Indian economy. All this
despite a poor monsoon that has traditionally been the yardstick to
measure prosperity and growth in a given year!
India too seems well and truly to be stepping out of its gloom
with stock markets showing a buoyant recovery, FDI flows
increasingly moderately, Indian companies casting the dust off
expansion plans, increasing activity in the domestic, financial and
capital markets, and industrial production recording a steady
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