Growth in key infrastructure sectors slowed to 3.4 per cent in June, the lowest performance in 10 months, prompting economists to hint that robust industrial expansion may drop to single digit.

The six infrastructure industries, with 26.7 per cent weight in the total factory output, saw its pace slowing down in June under the impact of a sharp decline in output growth in cement, electricity and coal.

The infrastructure industries had expanded by 6.3 per cent in June last fiscal. In May this year, the growth was five per cent.

The year-on-year growth in June this fiscal was the lowest since July, 2009-10 when it expanded by only 3.2 per cent.

For the month under review, growth in coal and cement production dipped by 0.9 per cent and 3.6 per cent, respectively over 15.2 per cent and 12.7 per cent in June 2009-10.

Increase in electricity generation came down to 3.4 per cent against 7.7 per cent in the same period last year.

“IIP will slowdown and go in single digit. We need to clear the projects much quickly to add more and more capacities,” economic think-tank ICRIER Director Rajiv Kumar said.

“The dip will impact the IIP, which may come down to single digit,” Crisil principal economist D.K. Joshi said.

Industrial output in May grew by 11.5 per cent in May.

Crude oil and petroleum refinery products grew by 6.8 per cent and 2.9 per cent in June compared to 4 per cent and (—) 3.8 per cent in the year ago period respectively.

Finished steel production grew by 3.5 per cent in the month under review from 3.6 per cent in the year ago period.

In the first quarter of this financial year, the six core sectors registered a growth 4.6 per cent against 4.3 per cent in the same period last year.

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