Indian business confidence upbeat: survey

Monday, 31 December 2007, 04:54 Hrs
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New Delhi: Riding on expectations of higher growth, increased inventory levels and greater employment generation, Indian business confidence for the period starting October till end of the current fiscal is upbeat, says a survey by a leading Indian industry chamber.

This is much higher than the same survey conducted for the period April-September 2007-08, the survey by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) indicated.

The CII business confidence index (CII-BCI) showed the current situation index (CSI) and expectations index (EI) was higher among non-manufacturing firms as compared to manufacturing firms.

As many as 59 percent of the respondents indicated the gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate to be around 9 percent, while 22 percent indicated 9 to 9.5 percent.

About 87 percent of firms expressed plans to increase investment during October - March 2007-08 and 59 percent have revealed capacity utilization in the range of 75 to 100 percent.

"While expectations on capacity utilisation are normal, inventory levels are on higher side," CII said in a statement.

A large number of firms also expressed their decision to increase the value of production. About 66 percent of the companies surveyed have already increased their scale of production during the first half of 2007-08.

All these are expected to generate considerable employment by the second half of the upcoming financial year.

Despite a surging rupee against the weakening dollar, exports would continue to increase. However, the sector continues to face procedural delays, which acts as long-standing hurdle for exporters, which raises transactions costs and needs to be addressed urgently, the chamber said.
Source: IANS
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