Sparks fly as an employee uses an angle grinder inside an Ishwar Engineering Co. factory in Mumbai. (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

Core Sector Grows By 5.3% In February As Cement, Refinery Output Picks Up

Eight infrastructure sectors grew by 5.3 percent in February, aided by robust performance of refinery products, fertilisers and cement segments.

The eight infrastructure sectors – coal, crude oil, natural gas, refinery products, fertilisers, steel, cement and electricity – had grown by a mere 0.6 percent in February last year. The core sectors expanded by 6.1 percent in January this year.

Petroleum refinery production spurted 7.8 percent last month, against a negative growth rate of 2.8 percent in the year-ago month, according to the official data released today.

Fertiliser and cement production rose by 5.3 percent and 22.9 percent, respectively, during the month under review. Electricity generation too grew by 4 percent in February against 1.2 percent expansion in February 2017.

Coal and steel production growth slowed to 1.4 percent and 5 percent respectively during February against 6.6 percent and 8.7 percent respectively, in the same month last year.

Cumulatively, the eight core sectors grew by 4.3 percent in April-February 2017-18 against 4.7 percent in the same period last fiscal.

The core sector would have an impact on the Index of Industrial Production (IIP) data as these eight segments account for about 41 percent of the total factory output.