Reserve Bank of India logo seen on the gate of its office, in Mumbai. (Source: PTI)

RBI Board Meeting Deferred To Feb. 18

The meeting of the Reserve Bank of India's central board, which was slated to take a call on interim dividend, has been deferred to Feb. 18, according to people in the know.

The board meeting, which will be the first after the interim budget 2019-20, will also be addressed by the finance minister. The customary post-budget board meeting was earlier scheduled for Feb. 9 but has now been deferred, the people said.

The RBI board is going to take up request of the government for payment of interim dividend for the current financial year, they said. The board will take a view based on the central bank's first six months of audited earnings and finalise interim dividend transfer.

The RBI follows July-June financial year. The first half, thus, ended in December.

Also read: Government Asks RBI To Transfer Surplus Held Back In Previous Years

Last financial year, the RBI had paid an interim dividend of Rs 10,000 crore, while it has already transferred Rs 40,000 crore in the current fiscal. The receipt from various sources, including RBI dividend, helps the government meet fiscal deficit target.

In the Interim Budget 2019-20, the government has projected a fiscal deficit target of 3.4 percent for the financial year 2019-20. The government also came out with a roadmap to reduce the fiscal deficit, the gap between total expenditure and revenue, to 3 percent of the gross domestic product by 2020-21, and eliminate primary deficit.

Primary deficit refers to the deficit left after subtracting interest payments from the fiscal deficit.

Also read: Monetary Policy: Why The RBI Should Bite The Rate Cut Bullet