External debt up over 7 pc on higher non-resident deposits

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Higher non-resident deposits led to a rise of 7.6 per cent in India's external debt at $ 440.6 billion for the financial year ended March 31.

"India's external debt, as at end-March 2014, was placed at $ 440.6 billion showing an increase of $ 31.2 billion or 7.6 per cent over the level at end-March 2013.

"The increase in total external debt during financial year 2013-14 was primarily on account of rise in Non-Resident Deposits," Reserve Bank data showed today.

In a release about 'India’s External Debt as at the end of March 2014', it said the surge in outstanding stock of NRI deposits can mainly be attributed to mobilisation of fresh FCNR(B) deposits by commercial banks under the swap scheme offered by the RBI during September to November 2013.

In terms of major components, the share of external commercial borrowings (ECBs) continued to be the highest at 33.3 per cent ($ 146.5 billion).

It was followed by NRI deposits at 23.6 per cent ($ 103.8 billion) and short term debt at 20.3 per cent ($ 89.2 billion).

The RBI said: "US dollar denominated debt continued to be the largest component of India's external debt with a share of 61.8 per cent as at end-March 2014, followed by Indian rupee (21.1 per cent), SDR (6.9 per cent), Japanese Yen (5.1 per cent) and Euro (3.4 per cent)."

Also, government or sovereign external debt stood at $ 81.5 billion as at end-March 2014 as against $ 81.7 billion as at end-March 2013.

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