'Manufacturing sector can grow at 14% by adopting automation'
New Delhi: The country's manufacturing sector can grow at 14 percent on a sustained basis provided output is raised by adoption of automation and reducing cost, National Manufacturing Competitiveness Council (NMCC) Member Secretary Ajay Shankar said on Saturday.
"India can achieve 14 percent growth in manufacturing sector on a sustained basis, if we adopt automation to raise productivity and reduce costs," he said while addressing CII's International Conference on Cost Effective Manufacturing here.
Also, he said, the country can create 100 million gainful jobs by 2020, if business cycles and innovation are properly understood.
In December 2012, the manufacturing sector registered a contraction of 0.7 percent as against a growth of 2.8 percent in 2011.
Also, the government has envisaged a number of steps to give a boost to the sector under the National Manufacturing Policy (NMP) 2011.
The policy aims to create 100 million jobs within a decade and increase the share of manufacturing in the country's GDP to 25 percent by 2022 from the current 15-16 percent.
Shankar emphasised that adopting automation and cost effectiveness is critical for the manufacturing sector to survive, grow and compete globally.
"On Saturday, cost effectiveness and best use of energy is not just an option but a dire need because all markets and economies are open now. Competitiveness along with price and quality are critical for the sustained growth of the sector," he said.
Sharing similar views, CII Northern Region Deputy Chairman Jayant Davar said, "We have to focus on quality, price competitiveness and a clean environment. Automation, other than reducing the drudgery, can also reduce emission of pollutants and get India to the desired position in manufacturing sector."
Further, Shankar suggested that India should adopt a middle-path between the business models followed by Western and East Asian countries.
The western growth model, he said, was cyclical and there could be low and high growth zones. Whereas, the East Asian model of growth aims at high growth, though it may have its own pitfalls.
By adopting cost effective methods, India can manage its resources optimally, focus on quality and price and look forward to capturing its legitimate share of global market, he added.
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