Number theory: on lowering UPA-era GDP growth rate

Share This Article with Your Friends
  • 14
    Shares
Print Friendly, PDF & Email

 

 

 

Number theory: on lowering UPA-era GDP growth rate

The larger lessons from the GDP back series must not be clouded by a political slugfest
Backcasting, or reworking(नए सिरे) past national accounts statistics based(आधारित) on the latest base year, is a regular exercise that governments carry out(अंजाम देना/पूरा करना). Mainly done to enable precise comparison(तुलना) and analysis(जांच/विश्लेषण), it is a difficult exercise prone(इच्छुक/प्रवृत्त) to contestation(प्रतियोगिता) as it involves(शामिल) the inclusion(समावेश/अन्तर्भाव) of newer data sources, exclusion(बहिष्कार/निषेध) of outdated ones and making some subjective assumptions(मान्यताओं/धारणाएं) in the process. Throw in the political element(अंग/मूल तत्व), and GDP backcasting can become a controversial(विवादास्पद) exercise, as it has now become in the case of the release of back series data from 2005-06 to 2011-12, the new base year. The data computed(गणना करना/हिसाब करना) by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) and released by the Niti Aayog show that India never really grew(वृद्धि /बढ़ना)in double-digits in 2010-11, nor was it the high-growth economy in the five years preceding(पूर्ववर्ती) this as earlier thought to be. It so happens that this period covers the two terms(शर्तें) of the Congress-led United Progressive(प्रगतिशील/उन्नतिशील) Alliance government, and the new data have predictably(जाहिर) set off a political storm( तूफान/धावा). The Congress may feel aggrieved(पीड़ित/असंतुष्ट) as its biggest achievement, of taking India on the high GDP growth path, has come under question. During(दौरान/की अवधि में) earlier instances of backcasting of GDP data, the political environment was not as deeply polarized(ध्रुवीकृतफूट डालना ) as it is now, and so the exercise remained(बने रहे/टिकना) more academic.

The danger in the political slugfest now is that the many valuable(मूल्यवान ) insights(अंतर्दृष्टि) that can be gleaned from the data will be lost sight(दृष्टि/नजर) of. The biggest of these is that India never really decoupled from the global economy during the years of the financial crisis(संकट) (2008-10), unlike what was earlier believed. The new back series data show a much lower growth rate. This is an important learning for policymakers, going forward. Any criticism(आलोचना/समीक्षा) of the data has to take into account the fact that it has been generated by a thoroughly professional organisation, the CSO, and the methods have been scrutinised(छानबीन/देखना) by experts, including past chief statisticians, and the Advisory Committee on National Accounts Statistics. Certainly(निश्चित रूप से,), the release of the back series by the Niti Aayog goes against convention(सभा/सम्मेलन) and is bad in optics(प्रकाशिकी ). But this should not be reason to contest its integrity(अखंडता/सत्यनिष्ठा). The method of computation reflects the latest United Nations System of National Accounts; it also captures changes in the economy since 2004-05. Data sources have also been updated. Experts had testified to the robustness(मजबूती/दृढ़ता) of the method when it was introduced(प्रस्तावित) in 2015, even while underlining that the availability(उपलब्धता) of reliable(विश्वसनीय ) data was crucial(महत्वपूर्ण/निर्णायक) to arrive at the correct overall picture. Thereis little doubt that India needs to invest more in data collection and integration and do informal sector surveys more frequently(बारंबार/अक्सर). Robust, updated data are, in fact, insurance against politicians hijacking(अपहरण/लूट) what is essentially(अनिवार्य ) an economic exercise.

 

 

Important Vocabulary

1.Reworking(नए सिरे)
Synonyms: adapt, alter, edit, modify , redraw

2. Analysis(जांच/विश्लेषण),
Synonyms: inquiry, investigation, reasoning, scrutiny, search
Antonyms: connection, juncture, unification, unity, whole

3. Inclusion(समावेश/अन्तर्भाव)
Synonyms: admittance, formation, incorporation, involvement, composition
Antonyms: exclusion, subtraction

4. Computed(गणना करना/हिसाब करना)
Synonyms: figure out, gauge, cipher, count, enumerate
Antonyms: estimate, guess, subtract, conjecture, guesstimate

5. Preceding(पूर्ववर्ती)
Synonyms: introductory, previous, prior, foregoing, forward
Antonyms: later, back, inferior, last, unimportant

6. Aggrieved(पीड़ित/असंतुष्ट)
Synonyms: disturbed, grieving, oppressed, persecuted, wronged
Antonyms: comforted, happy

7. Polaris ed(ध्रुवीकृतफूट डालना
Synonyms: contradictory, contrary, contrasted, converse, counter

8. Element(अंग/मूल तत्व),
Synonyms: aspect, bit, component, detail, factor
Antonyms: whole, foreign land

9. Controversial(विवादास्पद)
Synonyms: contentious, disputed, dubious, questionable, arguable
Antonyms: certain, definite, sure, agreeable, incontrovertible

10.Sight(दृष्टि/नजर)
Synonyms: appearance, eye, perception, view, vision
Antonyms: reality, beauty, blindness

11. Criticism(आलोचना/समीक्षा)
Synonyms: assessment, comment, critique, judgment, opinion
Antonyms: heedlessness, neglect, approval, compliment, estimation

12. Reliable(विश्वसनीय
Synonyms: decent, decisive, dependable, good, honest
Antonyms: bad, broken, corrupt, dishonest, evil

13. Frequently(बारंबार/अक्सर).
Synonyms: again and again, generally, intermittently, many times, often
Antonyms: rarely, seldom, infrequently, not much, uncommonly

14. Essentially(अनिवार्य )
Synonyms: actually, approximately, necessarily, originally, permanently
Antonyms: doubtfully, apparently, on the surface, superficially

15. Robustness(मजबूती/दृढ़ता)
Synonyms: clout, courage, durability, energy, firmness
Antonyms: cowardice, idleness, inactivity, infirmity, instability

16. Hijacking(अपहरण/लूट)
Synonyms: carjack, commandeer, kidnap, steal, shanghai

 

 

Credit To The Hindu News Paper

The larger lessons from the GDP back series must not be clouded by a political slugfest
Backcasting, or reworking past national accounts statistics based on the latest base year, is a regular exercise that governments carry out. Mainly done to enable precise comparison and analysis, it is a difficult exercise prone to contestation as it involves the inclusion of newer data sources, exclusion of outdated ones and making some subjective assumptions in the process. Throw in the political element, and GDP backcasting can become a controversial exercise, as it has now become in the case of the release of back series data from 2005-06 to 2011-12, the new base year. The data computed by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) and released by the Niti Aayog show that India never really grew in double-digits in 2010-11, nor was it the high-growth economy in the five years preceding this as earlier thought to be. It so happens that this period covers the two terms of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance government, and the new data have predictably set off a political storm. The Congress may feel aggrieved as its biggest achievement, of taking India on the high GDP growth path, has come under question. During earlier instances of backcasting of GDP data, the political environment was not as deeply polarised as it is now, and so the exercise remained more academic.

The danger in the political slugfest now is that the many valuable insights that can be gleaned from the data will be lost sight of. The biggest of these is that India never really decoupled from the global economy during the years of the financial crisis (2008-10), unlike what was earlier believed. The new back series data show a much lower growth rate. This is an important learning for policymakers, going forward. Any criticism of the data has to take into account the fact that it has been generated by a thoroughly professional organisation, the CSO, and the methods have been scrutinised by experts, including past chief statisticians, and the Advisory Committee on National Accounts Statistics. Certainly, the release of the back series by the Niti Aayog goes against convention and is bad in optics. But this should not be reason to contest its integrity. The method of computation reflects the latest United Nations System of National Accounts; it also captures changes in the economy since 2004-05. Data sources have also been updated. Experts had testified to the robustness of the method when it was introduced in 2015, even while underlining that the availability of reliable data was crucial to arrive at the correct overall picture. There is little doubt that India needs to invest more in data collection and integration and do informal sector surveys more frequently. Robust, updated data are, in fact, insurance against politicians hijacking what is essentially an economic exercise.