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Total debt expected to rise to 61.7% of GDP in FY22: Minister

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The government on Tuesday informed Parliament that it expects the total debt as percentage of GDP to increase to 61.7 per cent (provisional) in 2021-22 from 60.5 per cent (provisional) in the previous fiscal. At the same time, public debt would rise to 54.2 per cent in the current financial year from 52 per cent in 2020-21.

In a written reply in the Rajya Sabha, Minister of State for Finance Pankaj Chaudhary said the government’s amendment of the FRBM Act will target a path of fiscal consolidation aimed towards reaching a level of fiscal deficit below 4.5 per cent of GDP by 2025-26.

The government expects fiscal deficit to come down to 6.8 per cent in the current fiscal from 9.3 per cent estimated for 2020-21.

Amendment to the FRBM debt targets will be in consonance with the broad fiscal deficit path, he added.

Replying to another question, Minister of State for Finance Bhagwat Karad said the RBI through a circular on ‘Storage of Payment System Data’ in 2018 “had mandated all system providers to ensure that the entire data (full end-to-end transaction details / information collected / carried / processed as part of the message / payment instruction) relating to payment systems operated by them is stored in a system only in India.”

They were also required to report compliance to RBI and also submit a board-approved System Audit Report (SAR) conducted by an Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-In) empanelled auditor, Karad said.

In response to requests for clarifications on various issues from Payment System Operators (PSOs) on the above notification and for expeditious compliance by all PSOs, he said the RBI also issued Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on the subject on June 26, 2019.

RBI has informed that American Express Banking Corp (Amex), Diners Club International Ltd (Diners) and Mastercard Asia/Pacific Pte Ltd (Mastercard) failed to comply with the requirements of the above circular, he said.

“Accordingly, Amex and Diners were prohibited by RBI from on-boarding fresh domestic customers onto their card networks from 01.05.2021 till the time full compliance with the requirements of the circular was ensured and a satisfactory SAR was submitted. A similar prohibition was imposed on Mastercard from 22.07.2021,” he said.

Domestic banks already have substantial credit card business in the country, and there is no restriction on them on running such business, he added.

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