India GDP figures set to show growth above 8%

NEW DELHI, May 30, 2011 (AFP) – India is expected to post economic growth of more than eight percent when it reports data for the fiscal fourth-quarter on Tuesday, despite a series of rate hikes that have hit industrial output. Asia’s third-largest economy is estimated to have expanded 8.2 percent from a year earlier in the three months to March 2011, according to the median estimate in a Dow Jones Newswires poll of 19 economists.

India’s Central Statistical Organisation will announce Gross Domestic Product (GDP) figures at 0530 GMT.

The forecast growth figure would be the same as in the October-December period but below the 8.6 percent growth recorded in the fourth quarter of the previous fiscal year.

India’s economy is still clocking robust growth, second only to neighbouring China among major economies, as domestic demand continues to grow on the back of rising income.

The farm sector is expected to show a strong recovery, boosted by a good winter harvest, but manufacturing activity has been slowed by nine interest rate hikes in the past 15 months to tackle stubbornly high inflation.

The economy is believed to have grown 8.5 percent in fiscal year 2010/11 that ended in March 2011, just below the gover