Narendra Modi reviews economy with Nirmala Sitharaman, Finance Ministry officials

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday held a review meeting with Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and senior officials of the Finance Ministry.

“The meeting was to review the state of the economy and also look into the ways forward for faster growth,” an official in the Finance Ministry, speaking on condition of anonymity, told The Politics Today.

“The Finance Minister also informed the Prime Minister about the outcomes of the various review meetings she held last week.”

Ms. Sitharaman had met representatives from the banking, FMCG, auto, real estate, and steel sectors last week.

While the government itself has been silent on what it plans to do to reinvigorate the economy and help reverse the current slowdown, industry representatives have acknowledged that the Finance Minister had apprised herself of all the issues and was receptive to their suggestions.

The Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council will likely discuss the possibility of a rate reduction for certain categories of automobiles, as also the possibility of restoring the provision of input tax credits for premium under-construction properties in a bid to boost demand in the real estate sector, at its next meeting, Finance Ministry officials had earlier told The Hindu.

Industry representatives, including from the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), have also sought steps to hasten the transmission of interest rate cuts made by the Reserve Bank of India so that consumers actually perceive the benefit and revive spending.

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