At 3.6%, core sector growth in March slowest since October

NEW DELHI: Core sector output grew 3. 6% in March, the slowest pace of expansion since October last year, weighed down by a fall in electricity, cement and crude oil production.
In 2022-23, the eight industries, which account for around 40% of the index of industrial production, are estimated to have grown 7. 6%, compared with 10. 4% in the previous year, latest official data showed.

While oil output has been declining continuously for 10 months now, it was the first contraction in power production in at least 13 months including several months of double-digit increase. Cement production was 0. 8% lower, which was also the first contraction in five months. Natural gas and refinery products output too saw modest rise
(see graphic). Coal, fertiliser and steel were among sectors that saw robust growth. “The core sector output has grown at a CAGR of 3. 6% since FY20 underlying that a sustained recovery is still some distance away,” India Ratings principal economist Sunil Sinha said.

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