Despite slowdown, Andhra eyes 8-9 percent growth

Hyderabad, June 09: Despite the economic slowdown, Andhra Pradesh has targeted eight to nine percent average annual growth for the next five years.

The Congress government, which was re-elected last month, has set 4 and 10 percent growth rates for the agricultural and industrial sectors respectively.

The targets were spelt out in Governor Narayan Dutt Tiwari’s address to the joint session of both houses of state legislature Monday.

The governor was confident that the global economic slowdown will not have much impact on the state and the government would continue its economic strategy of stepping up expenditure on irrigation and housing programmes.

Expressing satisfaction over the government’s performance during the last five years, Tiwari said the state achieved average annual growth of 9 percent, higher than the national average of 8.5 percent during the period.

‘It gives me immense sense of satisfaction that my government in the state has become a role model for the country for various welfare and developmental programmes,’ the governor said.

Tiwari also assured that the government would continue to promote its major infrastructure projects like the Outer Ring Road around Hyderabad and the Hyderabad Metro Rail project under a public-private partnership.

He noted that Andhra Pradesh had earned national acclaim for its good fiscal management during the last five years.

Initially, the state government launched the ambitious ‘Jalayagnam’ programme to implement 26 projects with an outlay of Rs.46,000 crore. This has now been substantially expanded.

‘Now, 81 projects with a capital outlay of Rs.176,000 crore are being implemented to create additional irrigation potential for 100.38 lakh acres, in addition to stabilising 21.75 lakh acres,’ Tiwari said.

Under the ‘Jalayaganam’ programme, the state government has so far completed 12 projects and another 13 are nearing completion.