Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman talking to reporters in Washington
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman talking to reporters in Washington

Rise in interest rates amid global economic slowdown dependent on India, China growth: Nirmala Sitharaman

ANI | Updated: Oct 20, 2019 04:19 IST

Washington D.C. [USA], Oct 20 (ANI): Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday (local time) said that a rise in interest rates that have fallen due to a global economic slowdown is largely dependent on India and China's growth estimates.
"The rise in interest rates is largely dependent on India and China's growth estimates. In other words, on their (India and China) performance depends the rest of the global growth also," the minister said at a press conference following her address at the annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank in Washington.
Divulging details from her meetings, Sitharaman also said that the discussions were overall focused on the global slowdown.
"Economies are worrying how interest rates are continuing to fall since such a long time and the question whether it will continue like that," she added.
Regarding her bilateral meetings on the sidelines of the IMF's meetings, the minister stressed that the negotiations between India and the United States to reach a trade deal is underway in "full speed".
"That is something on which Robert Lightizher, the US Trade Representative, and Wilbur Ross, US Commerce Secretary, is working on. Negotiations are going in full speed and there's a great intensity with which both the sides are engaging. Hopefully, the deal will be struck soon," she added.
Tensions on the trade front between the two countries had emerged in June after US President Donald Trump revoked preferential trade privileges, in response to which India imposed tariffs on 28 US products, including almonds and apples.
India had been the biggest beneficiary of the Generalised System of Preferences (GSP), a programme designed to help developing countries sell to US consumers.
Meanwhile, Sitharaman also stated that US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin is also expected to visit India soon.
"I expect to have a lot more detailed discussion with him then," she added.
Addressing the Plenary Session of the IMF and Financial Committee (IMFC) during the IMF-World Bank annual meetings, Sitharaman also reflected on the global money lender's recently extended loan worth USD six billion to cash-strapped Pakistan to revive its plunging economy.
"I didn't get into the details of what considerations where placed before them when they extended the facility to Pakistan but I certainly did mention that it has to have a certain linkage otherwise if there's a global action towards controlling terror and money laundering then it won't serve the purpose," the minister noted. (ANI)