New Delhi- The growth of eight key infrastructure sectors slowed to 6.7 per cent in February due to poor performance of some sectors like fertiliser, according to official data released on Thursday.

However, on a sequential basis, the growth rate is highest in the last three months.

The growth of eight core sectors — coal, crude oil, natural gas, refinery products, fertiliser, steel, cement and electricity — was 4.1 per cent in January.

It was 7.4 per cent in February 2023.

Cumulatively also, the growth rate in the output of these sectors slowed to 7.7 per cent in April-January this fiscal against 8.2 per cent in April-February 2022-23.

The output growth of fertiliser was in the negative zone.

The eight core sectors contribute 40.27 per cent to the country’s Index of Industrial Production (IIP).

According to the data, the growth rate in the output of refinery products, steel, and electricity declined in February.

However, coal (11.6 per cent), crude oil (7.9 per cent), natural gas (11.3 per cent), and cement (10.2 per cent) production registered healthy growth during the month under review.

Aditi Nayar, Chief Economist, Head – Research & Outreach, Icra Ltd, said the core sector growth improved to a three-month high in February.

Three of the eight industries – coal, cement and natural gas – displayed a double-digit expansion.

“Given the healthy improvement in the core sector growth, we expect the IIP to record an expansion of 6.0-6.5 per cent in February 2024,” she said.  (PTI)


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