India's per capita external debt rose 17.55 per cent to Rs21,493 in the 2013-14 financial year from Rs18,283 crore in the previous financial year on the back of rising non-resident remittances.
Rise in NRI deposits pushed up India's per capita external debt by 17.55 per cent to Rs21,493 in one year period ending March 2014, minister of state for finance Nirmala Sitharaman said in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha today.
"The per capita external debt was estimated at Rs 18,283 in 2012-13 and Rs 21,493 in 2013-14," the minister stated.
Total external debt of the country increased to $440.6 billion during the last fiscal, from $409.4 billion in 2012-13.
India paid $11.2 billion in debt service charges on its external debt in the last fiscal. The interest component was $10.9 billion in 2012-13, she said.
"The rise in external debt in 2013-14 was largely due to increase in Non-Resident Indian (NRI) deposits, which is mainly attributable to mobilisation of fresh Foreign Currency Non-Resident Deposit (Banks) [FCNRB(B)] deposits by commercial banks under the special limited period swap scheme offered by the RBI to boost net capital flows into India," Sitharaman said.
She said the external debt management policy followed by the government emphasises monitoring of long and short term debt and raising sovereign loans on concessional terms with long term maturities.
The policy also emphasises regulating external commercial borrowings through end-use and all-in-cost restrictions and rationalising interest rates on NRI deposits.