Economic Survey 2018-19: Blue, geared up and not Anglo-Saxon


New Delhi: A sky blue cover to denote blue sky thinking for a $5-trillion economy by 2025, embedded in that blue interlinked gears that will drive sustained 8% growth – the Economic Survey seeks to get its messaging going right from the cover page. And early in the Survey, it questions and critiques “Anglo-Saxon” economic theories, saying economic theory should follow from real world, real date should not be attempted to fit into theories.

The inter-linked gears on the Survey cover page denote investments, savings, jobs, exports, among others. The survey’s main pitch is private investment as a driver for growth in jobs and exports which will in turn increase savings as well as drive demand.

An economy, the survey says, is never at an equilibrium, unlike what economic theories assume. The analysis “departs from traditional Anglo-Saxon thinking by viewing the economy as being neither in a virtuous or a vicious cycle, and thus never in equilibrium”.


Survey chapters are replete with shlokas from, including from the Rig Veda and Charak Samhita. For example: “Work gets accomplished by putting in effort, and certainly not by mere wishful thinking”.

And Subramanian who has proposed 12 ideas to drive the economy also relies on Kautilya to drive home his point. “The Rule of Law and maintenance of order is the science of governance,” the Survey says, quoting the Arthashastra.

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