India is at crossroads as its economy cools and will have to make difficult policy choices if it wants to a reversal of slow growth, state run media in China has warned.
An opinion piece appearing in the state-run Global Times said, " If the government fails to build its capacity for policy implementation and cannot continue to drive economic reform, India's economy will go into a downward spiral."
"The Modi administration always takes a tough stance on economic reform. Now the most critical and urgent issue is building more capacity for policy implementation. We are not sure whether Modi can achieve this. Concern over the future of the Indian economy is well-founded," the opinion piece adds.
"With an unexpectedly weak growth rate of 5.7 percent in the April-June period, India's economy is at a critical crossroads. During this difficult time, determination to pursue reform expressed by the Narendra Modi administration will determine the country's future," the article further states.
The Global Times cites demonetisation and the introduction of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) as key factors responsible for India's three-year low economic growth.
Describing GST as a necessary reform conducive for India's long-term growth prospects, the Chinese daily, however, says that it is facing increasing criticism for dealing a short-term blow to the economy.
China by contrast it says has the Communist Party of China (CPC) to lead economic development.
The Global Times says, "India's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is weaker than the CPC in terms of policy implementation and the promotion of economic reform. The dilemma the Indian government faces is the limited influence it has when different interest groups express their opinions. It will not be easy for Modi to let Indian society form a consensus over his ambitious reform agenda."
It predicts that the BJP will face tough times during the 2019 polls if it does not turn the economy around towards the growth path soon.