More reports on: Government policies, Union budget: 2012-13
Budget to focus on fiscal deficit reduction: Montek news
31 January 2012

Amid fears of the fiscal deficit exceeding the estimate of 4.6 per cent of GDP in 2011-12, the Planning Commission has come out with the suggestion that the government cut subsidies, and focus on bridging the revenue-expenditure gap in the upcoming budget.

"The broad focus (of the budget) will be on cutting down the fiscal deficit and containing subsidies, but it will not be an easy task," Planning Commission deputy chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia told CNBC TV18, in an interview.

The Reserve Bank, in its monetary policy review last week, had underlined the need for reduction in the fiscal deficit.

He said, the finance minister, on several occasions, had said that he did not intend to get back onto the fiscal consolidation path. He added, exactly how much was something that only the budget would tell us, but he did not think there was any doubt that the government intended to return to the consolidation path beginning next year.

"We need to know from the Budget exactly how much can be done and over what time period," Ahluwalia said.

He added that markets globally were interested in knowing about India's medium-term fiscal trajectory.

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Budget to focus on fiscal deficit reduction: Montek