India’s manufacturing sector in trouble, Anant Geete

Indian manufacturing sector needs to compete with that of China, which has occupied a dominant place in markets worldwide.

The Dollar Business Bureau

Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises Minister Anant Geete on Thursday exhorted companies to counter the challenges posed by the growing Chinese products, which are being sold at globally competitive prices.

"India's manufacturing sector is in trouble for last many years. In the era of globalisation, competing in international markets has become a challenge for the country's private as well as state-owned firms," Geete said at an event organised by Assocham.

"If we fail to compete globally, we will get isolated. We have to compete with China, which has occupied a dominant place in markets worldwide. We need to accept this challenge," he said.

According to the Nikkei Markit India Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) – a tool to evaluate manufacturing performance in the domestic market -- fell to 52.1 in September from 52.6 a month ago, indicating that manufacturing growth has lost some momentum.

"It is the government's responsibility to safeguard the interests of the country's private and public sector firms. We have to sell products in global markets at competitive prices," Geete said.

Referring to India’s steel industry, he said the steel industry has been facing problems for over 2-3 years and a minimum import price (MIP) for steel had to be ascertained as finished goods from China started coming in at a price at par with India's raw material cost.

The government had in February fixed an MIP of up to $752 per tonne on certain steel products to protect domestic players from cheap imports originating from China and various other countries. In August, it extended the MIP on 66 steel products for a period two months.

The Centre has also set a target to achieve Rs.20,500 crore from strategic sale in loss-making and sick PSUs this financial year.

The Dollar Business Bureau - Oct 20, 2016 12:00 IST