Maha shows 7.6% rise in vehicles on road at 3.14 cr

Last year's economic survey had said that the agriculture sector was expected to grow by 12.5 percent. The state's economy is expected to grow by 7.3 per cent in 2017-18 over the previous year, says the Economic Survey tabled in the state Legislature on Thursday.

In the state's plan expenditure, the highest allocation of Rs 35,373 crore is to social and community services, followed by the agriculture and allied services sector, which gets Rs 18,112 crore. However, during 2017-18 the agriculture and allied sectors are expected to register (-) 8.3 percent due to fewer rains (84.3 percent of normal rains) as compared to a year ago.

The production of kharif crops, including cereal, will decrease by 4 per cent, pulses 46 per cent, oil seeds 15 per cent and cotton 44 per cent, while the production of sugarcane is expected to increase by 25 per cent. Rabi crops are also expected to register a fall. Budget themes for the services and industry sectors were on expected lines given the State's ballooning debt, experts felt.

The state is banking GST collections to shore up its revenues, with Maharashtra reporting the highest collections in the country. The debt stock is 161 per cent of the revenue receipts. Of the total accounts opened, about 26 percent had zero-balance. The debt stock is expected to rise to Rs 4.13 lakh crore in 2017-18 against Rs 3.71 lakh crore in 2016-17, the interest burden to rise to Rs 31,037 crore against Rs 28,830 crore.

- Up to December 2017, about 3.6 lakh micro, small and medium enterprises have obtained Udyog Aadhaar Memorandum with an investment of Rs 85,362 crore and 27.6 lakh employment.

The Maharashtra Budget 2018-19 will be presented today. The promises made by the state in the budget are hollow and are not going to be completed. Infrastructure spending is highest in road works, with an allocation of Rs 10,828 crore.

Under MUTP 3A, the Centre has proposed projects worth Rs 54,776 crore.

- The state's share in the total industrial proposals received was about 17.9 percent and that in the total investment was 10.1 percent.

The revenue deficit of the State budget should be seriously looked into, especially when the State is expected to present a huge Budget of around '1.8 lakh crore to '2 lakh crore for 2018-19.

The debt to GSDP ratio is 16.5%, which is lower than the recommended 22.5% limit set by the 14th Finance Commission.

- The average cost of borrowing is expected to be 8.4 percent in 2017-18. But worry lines are growing about the state's ballooning debt, set to hit Rs 4.6 lakh crore, a rise of nearly Rs 56,000 crore over previous year and nearly three times the debt a decade ago.

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