The State Bank of India (SBI) Research has revised India's FY22 growth to 10.4% from 11% projected earlier in view of the increasing COVID-19 related curbs across states.
Stepping up coronavirus vaccination efforts instead of lockdowns would be the preferred alternative to impede the soaring second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in India, SBI Research said in a report on Friday.
The cost of inoculating half the populace of 13 major states would be approx. 0.1% of the GDP (Gross Domestic Product) or 15-20% of states' health budget, presuming that the Centre would cover the cost of vaccination for the other half of this population, the report stated.
This was substantially below 0.7% of GDP or Rs 1.5 lakh crore of approximate economic loss due to the existing curbs, the report added, stating that Maharashtra alone constituted 54% of this figure.
Although several leading economic indicators demonstrated improvements in March, the SBI business activity dipped to a five-month low to 86.3 for the week ended April 19.
"India must vaccinate its population with the single-minded focus to achieve herd immunity and avoid any further waves as other countries are facing," said Soumya Kanti Ghosh, group chief economic advisor at SBI, in the report.
India recorded another day of a record-high of 332,730 new coronavirus cases over the last 24 hours. The report further stated that there has been an increase in daily fresh COVID-19 cases in districts where the farmer protests, Kumbh Mela, and state elections were conducted.
It noted that basis the experience from other nations, infections stabilised after around 15% of the populace was administered the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, whereas the figure in India presently stands at 1.2%.
SBI Research further assessed that India would fully inoculate 15% of its populace only by December, stating that the top 15 countries constituted 84% of global vaccinations signifying huge unevenness.
The report said that the third wave peak in coronavirus cases in countries such as the US and Japan proved to be worse than the second wave. It added that "we as a country cannot afford any 3rd wave."