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Economists urge fiscal discipline and investment stimulus in pre-budget talks with Prime Minister Sitharaman

In a crucial development ahead of the Budget, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman recently convened a high-level meeting with the country’s leading economists to deliberate on the state of the Indian economy and chart a course for sustainable grow.

Sources told CNBC-TV18 that the deliberations focused on key imperatives such as promoting sustainable economic growth, promoting long-term investments and addressing critical inconsistencies across sectors.

An important aspect of the deliberations was the emphasis on maintaining policy continuity across all key sectors. The government’s focus areas, prominently highlighted at the meeting, included rural development, women empowerment, support to farmers and youth-centric programmes.

Economists participating in the deliberations stressed the importance of maintaining a budget deficit target of 5.1% for the next fiscal year. They underlined the need for sustainable capital expenditure to support infrastructure development and called for measures to boost private sector investment, which are seen as crucial drivers of economic expansion.

In addition to cautious fiscal policy, stimulating consumption growth and strengthening domestic production also emerged as crucial requirements. The discussions also placed a strong emphasis on job creation, recognizing this as a cornerstone for economic resilience and social stability.