Himachal growth pegged at 7.7% for 2008-09

Shimla: Beating the estimated national growth rate for the current year, the states economic survey estimated Himachal growth rate at 7.7 percent for 2008-09 compared with 7.1 percent estimated growth at the national level.

However over the past three years, the growth rate is on the decline with it having been 9.2 percent in 2006-07, 8.6 percent in 2007-08 and estimated at 7.7 percent for the current year.

At 1999-2000 constant prices the gross state domestic project for 2007-08 was estimated at Rs 24,817 crore as against Rs 22,854 crore in 2006-07, a spokesman of the economic and statistic department said.

Per capita income at current prices witnessed an increase of 9.1 percent as it increased to Rs 40,134 crore in 2007-08 from Rs 36,781 crore in 2006-07.

The increase in SDP was mainly because of 11.8 percent increase in secondary sector, 7.2 percent in primary sector, 3.8 percent in transport and trade sector and 6.1 percent in services sector.

Food grain production which was 14.76 lakh metric tons in 2006-07 fell to 14.41 lakh tons during 2007-08 and was likely to be 14.67 lakh tons in 2008-09.

Fruit production increased significantly by 93.2 percent, from 3.69 lakh tons in 2006-07 to 7.13 tons in 2007-08. Till December 08 in 2008-09 the fruit production was estimated at 5.94 lakh tons.

The economic growth in state predominantly is government by agriculture and its allied activities. However, during the last few years a significant rise in tourist influx is being noticed.

In 2008, tourists who visited the state numbered 97.50 lakhs of which 3.77 lakh were foreigners. In 2003 total tourists who came visiting were 57.12 lakhs which have been steadily rising and had reached 88.21 lakh in 2007.

The annual plan for 2009-10 has been proposed at Rs 2700 crore which would be 12.5 percent higher than the previous year, the spokesman said.

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