Economic Affairs Sec RGopalan says the ratings agency was not forthcoming during their interactions with finance ministry officials
FPJ BUSINESS DESK Mumbai
Accusing Standard and Poors of not being ” transparent”, the
Finance Ministry said on Tuesday that Indias economy is in a much better shape than what is being perceived by the global rating agency.
” You cannot judge us on a few parameters. We think we are in a much better condition than they think we can be,” Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, R Gopalan told reporters.
On Monday, the rating agency had cited economic slowdown and political roadblocks to policy- making to warn that India could be the first BRIC nation to lose investment- grade rating.
According to Gopalan, the Finance Ministry had told S& P representatives that their process of rating was ” not transparent”. ” We had also asked them to share with us their findings before the ratings are assigned so that we can explain our point of view. We donalt39t seem to be getting transparent answers,” he said. Finance Ministry officials had intensive discussions with S& P representatives in April.
S& P had cut its outlook on the countrys sovereign rating of alt39 BBB-alt39 to negative from stable in April.
Gopalan said the issue would be discussed with S& P shortly.
Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee had rejected the S& P report. The government was fully seized of the situation, he had said yesterday hours after the rating agency report came out.
He had also expressed confidence that there would be a turnaround in economic growth prospects in the coming months.
Corporate Affairs Minister Veerappa Moily alleged the rating agencys approach ” smacked of politics”. ” How can they pass reflection on political party and political leadership?” Moily asked. The Minister further said that he did not think any credit rating agency in the world had an approach of this type which ” smacks” of politics.
Assocham President Rajkumar Dhoot met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh seeking his intervention in fast- tracking infrastructure projects, without getting disturbed by global agencies like S& P which consider India and other emerging economies as their ” whipping boys”. After his meeting with the Prime Minister, Dhoot said, ” Let us not get rattled by these rating outlook and the threats. The Indian economy has an inherent strength and we never had any record of default in any of our international obligations”
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