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Current account deficit to be $45 bn this year: Chidambaram

New Delhi: India's current account deficit (CAD) will be contained at $45 billion this financial year, well below the record high level of 2012-13, Finance Minister P Chidambaram said today.

"CAD that threatened to exceed last year's $88 billion will be contained at $45 billion," he said in the interim budget presented in Parliament.

 Current account deficit to be  bn this year: Chidambaram

Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram. Image courtesy PIB

The finance minister also said, "I am happy to inform the House that we expect to add about $15 billion to the foreign exchange reserves by the end of the financial year."

In the first half (April-September) of 2013-14, CAD narrowed to $26.9 billion (3.1 percent of GDP) from $37.9 billion (4.5 percent of GDP) in the first half of 2012-13.

Both the government and the Reserve Bank of India had taken steps to bring down gold imports, one of the major causes for the widening of the CAD in 2012-13.

The government had increased customs duty on gold thrice in 2013 to 10 percent and the RBI had imposed a series of curbs on inward shipments of the yellow metal.

The Union minister also said India's exports are likely to touch $326 billion in 2013-14. Exports were about $304.5 billion in 2012-13.

The aim, Chidambaram said, "must be robust growth in exports and imports, both".

PTI

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Updated Date: Feb 17, 2014 12:25:38 IST