Industrial production failed to impress yet again as the index of industrial production (IIP) for November registered a growth of only 2.4 per cent over the same month last year compared with the 5.3-per cent growth in November last year.
According to official data released today,the cumulative growth in IIP over the April-November period has also inched lower to 3.9 per cent,down from 4.1 per cent for the April-October period. The performance is still better compared with the 0.4 per cent fall in industrial production last month. That fact,however,may not carry much weight considering that the slowdown in industrial growth had already begun late last year (it stood at a paltry 5.3 per cent in November last year) and this growth is measured over that base.
Commenting on the data,commerce and industry minister Kamal Nath today emphasised the importance of the recovery in industrial growth over the previous month and said he hoped the trend would continue in the months to come.
Growth in the index for manufacturing also picked up significantly from -1.2 per cent in October to 2.4 per cent in November. Growth in the overall index for the core sector,on the other hand,slowed down to 2.2 per cent,down from 5.1 per cent in November last year. The cumulative growth for the April-November period was at 3.6 per cent compared with 6.4 per cent over the same period last year.
Within the core sector,steel and petroleum refinery products saw negative growth of -1.4 per cent and -1.1 per cent,respectively. Cement and coal on the other hand registered unexpectedly strong growth rates of 8.7 per cent and 9.6 per cent,respectively.
Another important section of industrial output that took a bad hit in November was consumer durables,in which output fell 4.2 per cent. This is when growth was already negative last year and stood at -4.1 per cent. Consumer non-durables,however,grew a strong 7.3 per cent,compared with -2.1 per cent last November.