New Delhi, Feb. 13: The six key infrastructure industries grew just 4 per cent in December compared with 4.7 per cent in November and 9 per cent in December 2006.
A series of monetary tightening measures seems to have hurt industrial as well as consumer demand while the rising rupee affected exports.
Global credit rating agency Moodys said, We expect Indias industrial sector to slow in 2008, as high borrowing costs will weigh on demand for locally produced, interest rate-sensitive goods, particularly consumer durables. The annual industrial output growth will remain in single digits throughout most of 2008.
The production index of the six infrastructure industries — crude oil, refinery, steel, cement, electricity and coal — rose to 243 in December from 233.7 in the corresponding month of the previous year, an official statement said.
The six industries have a combined weight of 26.7 per cent in the index of industrial production. On a cumulative basis (April-December 2007-08), core sector growth stood at 5.7 per cent against 8.9 per cent in the same period of the previous year.
Crude oil was the worst performer with negative growth of 1.5 per cent compared with positive expansion of 10.7 per cent in the same month of the previous year.
Petroleum refinery products grew just two per cent against 10.8 per cent in the same month last year. Finished steel rose 5.1 per cent compared with 10.2 per cent, while cement sector growth dropped to 3.9 per cent from 8 per cent. Electricity generation went up by 3.8 per from 9.1 per cent in the year-ago period.