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IIP figures 'indeed serious', point towards slowdown: India Inc

Expressing disappointment over dismal performance of the industrial production, India Inc today said the figures are "indeed serious" and point towards a continued slowdown.

Updated: May 11, 2012, 19:08 PM IST

New Delhi: Expressing disappointment over dismal performance of the industrial production, India Inc today said the figures are "indeed serious" and point towards a continued slowdown.

"Notwithstanding volatility of index, the figures are indeed serious and point towards a continued slowdown which does not seem to have bottomed-out," Ficci said in a statement.

The chamber raised doubts over the credibility of data released by the government, as the March IIP figures show high degree of volatility in industrial performance.

"The high negative growth of some important segments like apparels and capital goods in March 2012 are in stark performance to their positive growth in previous month which also raises doubt over the quality of data," the chamber said.

In March, the capital goods output contracted by (-) 21.3 percent while apparels showed a high negative growth of 57.2 percent.

In past, there have been goof-ups in industrial and trade data. At the time of compilation of IIP for February, it was detected that in the IIP for January, the production data of sugar was incorrectly reported.

Similarly, there were some discrepancies noticed in export figures of August 2011 and later rectified.

On de-growth in manufacturing sector which accounts for more than 75 percent of industrial production, the industry asked the government for major reforms to arrest slowdown.

"Unless, the government acts immediately on reforms front, we do not expect an improvement in manufacturing until the second half of this fiscal," said Ficci, adding GDP growth for 2011-12 will be much below 6.9 percent.

CII called for immediate lowering of interest rates to boost the manufacturing sector which is facing issues like high input costs and poor availability of capital.

"Besides easing the monetary policy through rate reduction and also cut in CRR, it is important that some of the key reforms, which are politically relatively easy to get through, are announced at the earliest," CII said in a statement.

PHD chamber said that the policy reforms should focus at stabilising the macro-economic environment to retain the investor's confidence.

Echoing similar views, Assocham added that the factors affecting the dismal growth include growing uncertainty in the government over tax policies which are receding confidence level of the industry.

PTI