The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Infrastructure growth suffers

New Delhi, Nov. 21: The poor performance of the power sector, decline in coal output and the slow growth in crude oil and petrogoods pulled down the growth rate of six key infrastructure industries to 3 per cent in October this year from the robust rate of 6.7 per cent recorded in the same month last year.

According to statistics released by the commerce and industry ministry, the growth rate of electricity generation plummeted to a meagre 1.6 per cent during the month from 7.1 per cent in October 2002.

The output of crude oil and refined petroleum products remained almost flat while coal production declined by 1 per cent during the month.

Cement and finished steel also ended with lower growth rates of 6.0 and 6.8 per cent as against 6.7 and 8.6 per cent respectively for the same month of the previous year. There was some turnaround in crude oil production which grew at 2.7 per cent as against just 0.4 per cent recorded in the previous year.

The infrastructure index has been fluctuating widely during the current financial year.

Beginning with a modest growth rate of 3.9 per cent in April, it climbed to 4 per cent in May and 4.7 per cent in June, only to fall to 2.6 per cent the following month.

The index recovered to 3.8 per cent in August and then pushed up to 5.9 per cent before again plummeting to 3.0 per cent in October. The six infrastructure industries posted a growth rate of 3.9 per cent in the first seven months of the current fiscal (April to October) compared with a growth rate of 6.5 per cent in the same period the previous year.

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