New Delhi: Stating that the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) was committed to honest and efficient governance, President Pratibha Patil on Monday said the country would soon be back on the high growth path of eight to nine percent from the seven percent estimated for the current fiscal.

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Addressing the joint session of parliament on the first day of the budget session, the President said the current year has been a difficult year for the world economy and economic uncertainties have had an adverse impact across the globe.

"There is increased political uncertainty and turbulence in the international system and the environment in which we operate has become more challenging over the last one year. Our economy grew at a handsome rate of 8.4 percent in 2010-11, but it has slowed down to about 7 percent this year. This remains a healthy growth given current global trends," the president said.

She said the long-term fundamentals of the Indian economy remain robust. "My government is confident that it will soon steer the country back to the high growth trajectory of eight to nine percent," the President said. She said several steps had been taken to provide an honest and more efficient government and "a formidable and unprecedented" array of bills had been introduced in the parliament.