A three-day National Economics Conference 2013, organised by the Young Economist School, an initiative of the postgraduate scholars of the School of Economics, University of Hyderabad, began at the CV Raman Auditorium on the university campus at Gachibowli here on Friday. Chief secretary PK Mohanty inaugurated the conference which will discuss various trends in economy, especially in Indian context. “Andhra Pradesh is the only state with inclusive municipalities. About 40 percent of its urban budget goes to the welfare schemes targeting poor. It is a welfareoriented state. Various poverty alleviation projects like Indiramma housing, allocation of 75 lakh acres of land to the poor, women empowerment and health schemes underscore it,” Mohanty said while praising the development model of the state. “Every development initiative has an opportunity cost and social cost. In contrary to European economies which play a market role, Indian economy stresses on health, urban, education and housing economics. Welfare and education have to go together,” he observed. “There is a difference between theoretical economics and real economics. According to the theory, demand is the function of supply. But, in real economics, a lot of other elements like preference influence the demand function. There you do practical work and the result comes. The relevance of economics lies in its application,” he said.
On the present power crisis in the state, he said that despite the widening gap between demand and supply, the per capita consumption in AP (1,019 units), which is an index of economic development, crossed the national average of per capita power consumption of 879.2 units even in this critical juncture in the power sector. Considering the severe shortage of power, primarily on account of fuel shortages, was the major constraint for rapid economic development and employment generation, the state government decided to achieve an additional capacity of 4,000 MW by 2014-15, he said. It was firm on promotion of green power, particularly solar, to avoid recurrence of the existing fuel crisis and to bridge the gap between demand and supply. In positive response to the bids submitted for executing the solar power projects in the State, the government requested the bidders to convey their willingness to supply solar power at the purchase price of Rs 6.49 per unit (kwh) within one month from date of issue of the letter i.e. May 5, Mohanty said. Mohanty, who is also chairman of the State Energy Conservation Mission, suggested young economists to focus on energy efficiency which was the need of the hour to ensure economic development of all sectors. “If students want to involve in governmental programmes, give us feedback. Suggestions of non-polluted minds are welcome. We do a lot of work. We need feedback.” he added University vice-chancellor Ramakrishna Ramaswamy described the conference as a unique step to ensure quality education and research which are the primary goals of the university. “The conference will discuss why recession has not eased. It will also discuss whether our frameworks are enough to tackle it?” JVM Sarma said. Ch Hanumanta Rao, chancellor of the university, and G Nancharaiah, dean, School of Economics, spoke. Varied topics including macro economy and open economy, Indian economy, money banking and finance, agriculture and development issues will be discussed at the conference. Renowned economists Kaustav Banerjee, Ritu Dewan, Debashish Acharya, G Omkarnath and others will speak.