Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Monday delivered his third Budget speech in Parliament.
"I am presenting this Budget when the global economy is in serious crisis. Global growth has slowed down from 3.4% in 2014 to 3.1% in 2015. Financial markets have been battered and global trade has contracted. Amidst all these global headwinds, the Indian economy has held its ground firmly. Thanks to our inherent strengths and the policies of this Government, a lot of confidence and hope continues to be built around India," Jaitley said in Parliament.
The minister said that the country is beefing up its economy at a time when the world is weathering through an economic crisis.
"The International Monetary Fund has hailed India as a ‘bright spot’ amidst a slowing global economy. The World Economic Forum has said that India’s growth is ‘extraordinarily high’. We accomplished this despite very unfavourable conditions and despite the fact that we inherited an economy of low growth, high inflation and zero investor confidence in government’s capability to govern. We converted these difficulties and challenges into opportunities," he said.
Terming the country's "external situation" robust, Jaitley said, "The Current Account deficit has declined from 18.4 billion US dollars in the first half of last year to 14.4 billion this year. It is projected to be 1.4% of GDP at the end of this year. Our foreign exchange reserves are at the highest ever level of about 350 billion US dollars."