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MPC: Policy rate remains stable at 7%

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The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) decided to maintain the policy rate at 7 percent. The MPC noted that since the last meeting in November, the domestic recovery has gained some further traction. Most economic activity data and indicators of consumer and business sentiment have shown continued improvement.

As a result, there are upside risks to the current growth projection of slightly above 2 percent in FY21. On the inflation front, recent out-turns are also encouraging, suggesting a waning of supply-side price pressures from food and still-benign core inflation. While utility tariff increases may cause an uptick in inflation, this is likely to be transient given excess capacity in the economy and wellanchored inflation expectations. As a result, inflation is still expected to fall within the previously announced
range of 7-9 percent for FY21 and trend toward the 5-7 percent target range over the medium-term. With the inflation outlook relatively benign aside from the possibility of temporary supply-side shocks, the MPC felt that the existing accommodative stance of monetary policy remained appropriate to support the nascent recovery while keeping inflation expectations well-anchored and maintaining financial stability.

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