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PM eyes double digit growth for Indian economy in 2-3 yrs

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Saturday said the Indian economy is poised to grow by double digits in the next two-three years, having successfully weathered the impact of the global downturn.

"Global economic recession did not have much impact on us, as it had on other countries. Our target is to bring India to double digit growth path in the next two-three years," the Prime Minister said at a function organised by the Merchants' Chamber of Uttar Pradesh in Kanpur.

The Prime Minister said that there were a number of inherent strengths in the country's economy which can contribute to rapid growth in the future and they should be harnessed to push up economic growth to double digits.

"Our savings and investment rates are high. Our youth ratio in the population is higher as compared to other countries and our private companies have created their place at the international level and they are being considered as good companies," he said.

"We should take maximum advantage of our strengths so that we can achieve the target of double digit growth," he added.

He said the last two years were difficult for the economy because it not only had to face global recession, but also drought last year.

"It is a sign of how strong our eonomy is that we have been successful to overcome these problems," Singh said.

India's economic growth slowed down to 6.7 per cent during 2008-09 as it faced the ripple effects of global financial mess, after three successive years of nine per cent plus growth.

During 2009-10, growth recovered to 7.4 per cent, after the government provided stimulus packages to the economy.

This fiscal, the growth is targeted to further rise to 8.5 per cent.

The Prime Minister said that economic growth in the last few years had created new hopes among the people in the country.

"Today, our citizens are very hopeful of the future and India is being viewed with greater respect at the global level and attention is being on the issues being raised by us on the international forums," he said.

The Prime Minister said that the government had hiked investment in education and health sectors, which was necessary to achieve high growth rate in the times to come.

"Unemployment is a big problem before the country. For productive employment of youths their skill development is necessary for which a Skill Development Mission has been launched," Singh said.

The country, whose population crossed over 1.25 billion, has an estimated unemployment rate of 10.7 per cent of the working age population.

Referring to public private partnership in creating a world class airport terminal at Delhi, the Prime Minister said that private sector had played an important role in the development of the country.

"We are hopeful that by strenthening our partnership with the private sector, we will be able to improve our physical infrastructure," Singh said.

The government was of the view that country can only march forward, when every citizen is benefited by the development, he said.

"Our effort is that all - poor, marginal farmers, socio-economically backward section should become a partner in the country's development and this thought clearly reflects from schemes like rural employment, loan waiver and mid day meal," the Prime Minister said.



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