Inflation at low levels in past five years: Economic Survey
The Indian economy has witnessed a gradual transition from a period of high and variable inflation to a more stable and low level of inflation in the past five years, according to the Economic Survey released on Thursday.
"Headline inflation based on the consumer price index (CPI) has been declining continuously for the last five years. Headline CPI inflation declined to 3.4 per cent in 2018-19 from 3.6 per cent in 2017-18, 4.5 per cent in 2016-17, 4.9 per cent 2015-16 and 5.9 per cent in 2014-15," it said.
In April 2019, it stood at 2.9 per cent compared to 4.6 per cent in April 2018. Food inflation based on the consumer food price index declined to a low of 0.1 per cent during the financial year 2018-19.
The inflation based on wholesale price index (WPI) too remained moderate at 3 per cent in 2017-18 compared to 1.7 per cent in 2016-17, minus 3.7 per cent in 2015-16 and 1.2 per cent in 2014-15. During FY 2018-19, WPI inflation stood at 4.3 per cent, said the survey.
The current phase of low inflation is also marked by a reduction in both urban and rural inflation. The survey said a decline in rural inflation is steeper than that of urban inflation since July 2018, resulting in a decline in headline inflation.
Controlling inflation remains a key area of policy focus for the government, it said. The measures include regular monitoring of inflation, issuing advisories to states against hoarding and black marketing, holding regular review meetings on prices and availability of key commodities, higher minimum support prices for pulses and other crops to incentivise production and setting up of price stabilization fund for procurement of agri-horticultural commodities.