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The Indian government has described the 2.4 per cent industrial growth in February as “bottoming out” of the downturn.
“IIP figure is encouraging. But we have to do more, both on exports and industrial manufacturing. We feel the downturn is bottoming out,” said Anand Sharma, the country’s industry minister, while commenting on the industrial output numbers.
The growth rate was in the negative in November and December last year.
“The turnaround is very good. I would not call it strong growth but it does bear out that the economy has bottomed out. I would hope that subsequent months will show more robust growth … It suggests that the bottoming out is over and we are hopefully getting back,” said Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Planning Commission deputy chairman.
Production at factories, utilities and mines climbed 2.4 per cent from 2012, revealed India’s Central Statistical Office report in New Delhi yesterday.
The rupee has appreciated about 2 per cent against the dollar since the policy changes began in mid-September, paring its loss in the past year to 7.9 per cent.
Manmohan Singh, India’s prime minister recently asserted that India is on the right track to inclusive growth of 7-8 per cent.
“We are confident that the growth will bounce back with our efforts to 7 to 8 per cent,” said the prime minister.
It sees economic growth at around 7 per cent from 2014 onwards in its India Outlook report titled “The Worst May Be Over”.
The Reserve Bank of India is scheduled to announce its mid-quarter review of monetary policy on March 19, and there is widespread expectation that the central bank will cut policy rates to boost growth.