ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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In the Dumps

In the Dumps THE industrial recession brought on by the structural adjustment programme is proving to be more obdurate than the government had led the country to believe it would be. Basing itself on allegedly favourable supply factors, the Economic Survey for 1991-92 had confidently anticipated a quick upturn in 1992-93 following a 3 to 4 per cent growth in the index of industrial production in 1991-92. Actual growth last year was only 0.9 per cent and all indications are that the government's goal of a 5 per cent rise in the industrial production index in the current year will similarly be missed by a sizeable margin. The index has gone up by 21 per cent in the first four months of this year (April-July). While the 'mining and quarrying' group has shown a growth of 4.4 per cent and 'electricity' of 4.7 per cent, the rise in the index for 'manufacturing' itself has been no more than 1.2 per cent. But even this papers over the acutely recessionary conditions in a range of major industries. Automobiles of all types (except jeeps), consumer electronics, steel ingots, aluminium, copper, cotton and jute textiles, fertilisers, cement, some items of petrochemicals and large segments of the electrical and non-electrical engineering industries have all suffered significant declines in output in the first four to six months of 1992-93, Reports also suggest large-scale stockpiling of finished goods in many industries in the first half of the year Crude oil production too has suffered a setback, presenting a serious problem for the medium term.

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