NEW DELHI: India’s economy would grow at 8.5 per cent next fiscal and the 7.5 per cent growth projection by economists is on the “conservative side”, Power Minister R K Singh said today.
“The economists are saying that our growth rate will touch 7.5 per cent in the coming financial year. I think that they are even on the conservative side. Growth will touch at least 8.5 per cent,” Singh said while addressing the 7th India Energy Congress.
“India is on the cusp of becoming a great prosperous country…The momentum has started. The last quarter results show that. The adaptation to GST (Goods and Services Tax) regime has happened. There is growth in GST collection. There is 50 per cent increase in GST tax base.
“When the new GST regime would settle down, the tax collections would grow. So I think that the growth is not going to be 7.5 per cent. That will be at least 8.5 per cent.
We need to grow at that level,” he said.
Earlier this week, the Economic Survey tabled in Parliament pegged the economic growth rate at 7-7.5 per cent in 2018-19, up from 6.75 per cent this fiscal.
Singh was of the view that energy consumption in the country will triple or quadruple from the present per capita consumption of 1,020 units.
“By 2030, 40 per cent generation capacity will be from renewable sources. We are well on our way to crossing that target,” said Singh, who also holds the new and renewable energy portfolio.
He said the target of renewable energy capacity was 175 GW but India will touch 200 GW by 2022.
“We already have 62 GW of renewable energy capacity.
Around 30 GW (of renewable energy capacity) is under installation. That makes it 92 GW. We have bid out about 14 GW. That makes it 106 MW. We would bid out 40 GW next fiscal and another 40 GW after that (in 2019-20),” he said.
About e-mobility, he said that by 2030 India will have a significant proportion of vehicles powered by electricity which will reduce dependence on fossil fuel imports.
“More and more energy consumption would be through electricity. In fact 90 to 95 per cent of the consumption will be through electricity. In electricity, a good 75 per cent would be from renewables.
“I am not saying all of it (consumption) because storage is still not yet a viable proposition. It makes sense to balance renewables with hydro or gas based power. Once storage becomes viable it would come 80-90 per cent,” he said.