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Growth a national objective: Shaktikanta Das

Das, while speaking at the postpolicy press conference on Thursday, said at a critical juncture where growth was slacking, it was of paramount importance that monetary policy and fiscal policy work in coordination to achieve the best results in the national endeavour to revive growth. The career bureaucrat entered the RBI headquarters last December.

ET Bureau|
Dec 06, 2019, 06.47 AM IST
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MUMBAI: A year after his unexpected entry into the Reserve Bank headquarters, governor Shaktikanta Das said the relationship between the government and the central bank had improved and that growth was a “national objective” which was making both work together.

Das, while speaking at the postpolicy press conference on Thursday, said at a critical juncture where growth was slacking, it was of paramount importance that monetary policy and fiscal policy work in coordination to achieve the best results in the national endeavour to revive growth. “The government and the RBI will continue to work together to achieve the national objective of reviving growth. It is not one individual authority’s problem,” he said. “Growth is the responsibility of both the government and the RBI and both will continue to work in a coordinated manner. So far, there is good coordination between the fiscal and the monetary authorities. To say that one is looking at the other for growth is wrong. Both are committed towards the revival of growth.”

The career bureaucrat entered the RBI headquarters last December, at the most turbulent time in the relationship between the central bank and a government going into election amid sputtering economic growth. Das’ entry was also much talked about, due to the unexpected exit of predecessor Urjit Patel because of the pulls and pressures of the government on several issues ranging from bringing troubled state-run banks out of the prompt corrective action framework to more dividends from the RBI reserves. Das said hopes were pinned on the upcoming budget and a possible stimulus from the government to revive the economy.

“With regard to the budget, it is not a question of worry that the fiscal deficit will be high. In fact, I have gone to the extent of saying that in situations like this, when growth itself has fallen, the monetary and the fiscal authorities will continue to work together in greater coordination,” he said. “We would like to have greater clarity with regard to the kind and nature of counter-cyclical fiscal and other measures if any to be announced by the government in the budget. It will give us greater clarity, it’s not a question of worry.”

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