West Bengal FM: GSDP likely to grow by around 1.2%

Our Bureau Kolkata | Updated on February 08, 2021

Amit Mitra, says, there would be at least an 8% difference in growth compared to the national figure

West Bengal Finance Minister Amit Mitra on Monday said that the GSDP of Bengal is likely to grow by around 1.2 per cent even while the country’s GDP is expected to degrow by 7.7 per cent.

“There would be at least an eight per cent difference in growth compared to the national figure. This was due to our demand driven policy and high capital and developmental expenditures. The economy of Bengal would not shrink rather it will grow,” Mitra said at the Bengal Business Conclave and Synergy organised by the State Commerce and Industries Department jointly with WBIDC here today.

According to him, government, industry and lending institutions have worked closely in the state during the pandemic which has happened in Japan as well. The State Level Bankers Committee (SLBC) had set a target of disbursing loans to the tune of ₹90,000 crore during 2020-21.

“Despite pandemic, from April to December, loan disbursement to MSME’s by banks is over ₹50,000 crore. We are expecting that by the end of this fiscal, the figure would be ₹70,000-75,000 crore, which implies over 80 per cent target would be achieved despite pandemic,” he said.

Fund would not be a roadblock for capital and developmental expenditure proposed in the state budget tabled earlier this week as the 15th Finance Commission has given the highest revenue deficit grant to West Bengal following a presentation by the state led by Mamata Banerjee. “Finance commission was impressed with our presentation,” he added.

According to him the 15th Finance Commission will grant ₹40,000 crore in four years and in the first year (2021-22) it would get ₹17,000 crore. “We shall have this kitty as a revenue deficit grant. This fund is open to use for any purpose. We can use this for capital expenditure as well as for development proposed in the budget,” he said.

Besides, due to positive GSDP growth, tax collection has increased and GST growth from Bengal would also be better. West Bengal has attracted investment of about ₹15,000 crore and created 2.43 lakh jobs directly and indirectly in the last two years.

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Published on February 08, 2021
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