Himachal to clock 9 % growth, beat national economic growth

Per Capita Income to touch Rs 58,493/-

Shimla: Boosted by a record production of fruits, the state economic growth is expected to beat the national growth rate of 8.6 % and is likely to clock 9 % growth in 2010-11, chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal stated today.

Laying the economic survey for the financial year in the Vidhan Sabha, Dhumal said that the state economy had overcome the fallout of the global economic slowdown and the economy was on the growth path.

Attributing the growth to the prudent polices of the government he pointed out that in 2008-09 the growth rate was 7.4% and in 2009-10 it was 8.1 percent.

The high growth rate had also impacted the per capita income which for the current financial year was estimated to touch Rs 58,493 and was an increase of Rs 8128 over 2009-10.

In 2009-10 the per capita income was Rs 50, 365 and in 2008-09 it was Rs 46,019, he said. “However, the growth rate during the Tenth Plan period, 2002-07, has been estimated at 7.6 percent, which is 0.2 per cent less than the national average”, he added.

Advance estimates showed that the gross state domestic product (GSDP) at current prices was likely to touch Rs 52,426 Cr against the revised GSDP for 2009-10 which was Rs 43,281 Cr, whereas the GSDP of 2008-09 has been put at Rs 38,571 Crs. Agriculture which includes horticulture generates about 17 percent of GSDP, said the chief minister, who also hold charge of agriculture.

He said that significant progress had been made in development of horticulture with fruits upto December, 2010 having registered an record production of 9.61 lakh tones. In 2009-10 the total fruit production was 3.82 lakh tones.

“Of the 9.61 lakh tons of fruit production in 2010-11 about 8.92 lakh tones was that of apples, while in 2009-10 the apple production was 2.80 lakh tones. Plans to bring additional 4000 hectares under fruit cultivation were under implementation,” said Dhumal.

By according high priority to tourism, it was emerging as a major sector in development of the state economy and appropriate infrastructure had been developed for the growth of sector.

Two new ambitious schemes, ‘Har Ghar Kuch Kahta Hai’ and ‘Har Gaon Ki Kahani’ had been started to promote nature, adventure, historic, religious and rural tourism.

“Hydro power was emerging as a major growth driver and the states power policy was designed to address aspects like capacity addition, energy security, access and availability, affordability, efficiency, environment and employment,” he said.

Out of the states hydel potential of 23,000 MW, only 6672 MW stood harnessed and 71 % of the potential was yet to be tapped, he said.

In order to balance growth with environmental concerns, the chief minister said that Himachal Pradesh had taken the lead in the area of climate change mitigation and initiated concrete steps for reducing green house gas emissions.

“In times to come, we and would emerge as a model state in the country for the initiatives taken towards environment protection, conservation and climate mitigation,” he said.

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