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Need to tackle high subsidy spending soon,says FM

Asia’s third largest economy is suffering its longest and deepest slump in at least a decade.

Written by Reuters | New Delhi |
October 8, 2013 12:28:53 am

India must tackle a jump in spending on fuel and food subsidies sooner rather than later,finance minister P Chidambaram said,part of a series of steps aimed at stabilising the economy to be announced ahead of an election due within seven months.

Asia’s third largest economy is suffering its longest and deepest slump in at least a decade. Rating agencies have threatened to downgrade its sovereign debt to “junk” status,and the government is racing to revive growth in a bid to return to power for a third consecutive time.

“We’ve done a lot of things,but we have to do many more things,and I think we will do them in the next few weeks and months,both by the government and by the central bank,” Chidambaram said.

“On the government side,sooner (rather) than later we will have to address the issue of higher subsidies than budgeted,on both fuel and food,” he said,on the eve of a week-long trip to the United States that includes an investor roadshow in San Francisco.

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