NEW DELHI: Political adspend in India could reach 800 crore rupees ($170m; €129m; £116m) this year, helping drive growth through television, newspapers and radio as many major advertisers cut their expenditure levels.

Estimates taken from a number of industry forecasters predict that India will be one of the few advertising markets to enjoy meaningful growth this year, although the rate of expansion is set to slow.

Two of India's biggest parties, Congress and the BJP, are predicted to spend 400 crore rupees between them over the course of the campaign season, while the total outlay during the election will contribute around 7% of annual marketing expenditure in the country.

Bhaskar Rao, chairman of the Centre for Media Studies, argued that the "media sector is going through a bad phase as even leading MNCs are cutting back on advertising," meaning that political adspend will "definitely help" boost revenues.

Many online operators have also launched politically-orientated websites in an attempt to attract advertising revenues, including Google, in the form of a community called The Voice of Youth on its social networking portal Orkut.

Further major advertisers during the election will include the Election Commission, predicted to spend 2,000 crore rupees, as well as government agencies and other parties and candidates, which will be responsible for around 8,000 crore rupees altogether.

Data sourced from Economic Times; additional content by WARC staff