New Delhi, Aug 30 (IANS) Industry leaders Friday sounded cautious about the future of the Indian economy as the gross domestic product (GDP) numbers stood at 4.4 percent for the first quarter (April-June) of 2013-14.
"The economy continues to tread in difficult waters as many challenges remain on the fore. The precariousness displayed by the rupee has raised concerns afresh on the external front, industrial growth continues to face deceleration, and the investment cycle is yet to kick off," Naina Lal Kidwai, president of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) said.
"However, we would have to strive harder on the reform front to give a push to the manufacturing sector. The government in the past few weeks has been very proactive announcing measures to step up FDI and manage the widening current account deficit," she added.
The manufacturing sector contracted 1.2 percent and mining output dropped 2.8 percent in the quarter ended June 30. This is the worst quarterly growth in India's gross domestic product (GDP) since January-March quarter of 2009, the year of the global financial crisis.
"The GDP figures for first quarter clearly show that the economy continues to be in the throes of a slowdown. The concern becomes more acute when we see that at the present moment, there are no clear indications that the economy has bottomed out," said Chandrajit Banerjee, director general, Confederation of Indian Industry.