The Ramjas Economic Society hosted its annual economics festival, Dicentium on 21st February, 2020. The Guest of Honour and the speaker for Dicentium’20 was Dr. Ashok Lahiri, an eminent Indian economist. He delivered a lecture on the topic “The Economic Slowdown in India”.
Currently a member of the Fifteenth Finance Commission, Dr Lahiri had also previously served as the 12th Chief Economic Adviser to the Government of India, Chairman of Bandhan Bank, Executive Director at the Asian Development Bank, Director of the National Institute of Public Finance and Policy, a reader at the Delhi School of Economics, a consultant with the World Bank, and senior economist at the International Monetary Fund.
Dr Lahiri provided extensive insight into the causes and nature of the economic slowdown in India as well as its effects on the growth rate of Real GDP, Gross Fixed Capital Formation, combined fiscal deficit of the centre and the state and much more. He was of the view that the current slowdown is not as bad as the previous economic crises and that economic reforms today are a matter of choice, unlike the 1991 crisis. He also suggested actions that can be taken by the government without sacrificing macroeconomic stability through maintaining caution about fiscal stimulus and monetary easing. Along with that, he also responded to queries from the audience, especially regarding the factors affecting the global slowdown.