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Ascon study upbeat on manufacturing sector

Our Bureau

NEW DELHI, Dec. 29

THE recovery in the manufacturing sector that took place during the last few months of 2002 is expected to continue during the first six months of 2003, the latest Ascon survey conducted by the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) shows.

The survey indicates that in the next six months, sales of companies in many industrial sectors will rise between 5-10 per cent (on a yearly basis) while in some areas, sales are expected to rise by more than 10-15 per cent.

The survey also shows that in a few sectors, sales might cross 15 per cent.

Of the 58 manufacturing sectors, for which the survey has estimated future sales and production, 26 come in the 5-10 per cent category.

The prominent sectors in this category include car and truck tyres, whose production is estimated to grow by 6-8 per cent. Incidentally for the first nine months of this fiscal year, it was 10 per cent.

Besides, rubber goods (11 per cent), construction and cold-rolled steel strips (both 10 per cent), cement and electrical fans (both 9 per cent), and steel (7 per cent) were among the other sectors which recorded growth in production.

The survey shows that four sectors of the 58 are forecast to grow by more than 15 per cent (on an yearly basis).

While colour televisions are expected to maintain their growth at 25 per cent, electronic components are expected to grow at between 15-20 per cent as against a growth of 14 per cent this year.

The survey shows that the power sector is expected to grow by 21 per cent this year as compared to a growth of 20 per cent last year while personal computers are expected to grow at 20-25 per cent up from the eight per cent growth recorded this year.

Auto components (18 per cent), automobiles (20 per cent), air conditioners (20 per cent), ceramics (9 per cent), paints (10 per cent) and pharmaceuticals (12 per cent during the last nine months of this fiscal) are among the sectors which are expected to grow by 10-15 per cent.

Similarly, aluminium, casting, fertilisers, industrial gases, processed foods, soaps and tea are among the sectors which are expected to grow at between 5 and10 per cent.

Two sectors - plastics and textile machinery - are not likely to see any increase or decrease in sales.

However three sectors - cigarettes, diesel engines and edible oils - are likely to see a decline in sales, the survey shows.

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