Big industry expands 3.6pc YoY in July-Aug FY21

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s large-scale manufacturing (LSM) production grew 3.66pc year-on-year in the first two months (Jul-Aug) of the current fiscal year (FY21), as compared to the corresponding period of last year, Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) reported on Friday.

As per the PBS data, the LSM output posted a growth of 1.19pc in August. This rebound came months of damage inflicted by Covid-19. Before coronavirus, it was only in the month of November 2019 when LSM last posted a growth.

The growth in big industry’s output in July and August reflected a revival in economic activities in the country. In FY20, the LSM output had fallen 10.17pc on a yearly basis.

Sector-wise, production of 11 items under the Oil Companies Advisory Committee dipped 5.36pc YoY in August; 36 items under the Ministry of Industries and Production went up 2.33pc; while 65 reported by the provincial bureaus of statistics rose 0.15pc.

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The LSM constitutes 80pc of the country’s total manufacturing and accounts for nearly 10.7pc of the national output. In comparison, the small-scale industry makes up for just 1.8pc of GDP and 13.7pc of the secondary sector.

As per the PBS data, the auto sector, except tractors, trucks and motorcycles, was the major laggard with massive declines in sales in August on account of multiple upward price revisions due to currency depreciation.

The sector saw production of tractors rising by 21.47pc, trucks 19.83pc and motorcycles 8.88pc during the month under review. On the other hand, output of buses fell 52.46pc, jeeps & cars 29.45, and light commercial vehicles 44.68pc.

The data for August showed that the output of petroleum products dropped 5.36pc.

The output of two major oil products, petrol and high-speed diesel, mostly used in the transport sector and agriculture, was up 8.56pc and 5.91pc, respectively. LPG output increased 8.84pc, while the production of jute batching oil surged 118.46pc.

On the flip side, the production of furnace oil dipped by 10.42pc, kerosene oil 3.45pc, jet (airline) fuel 52.61pc, lubricating oil 38.55pc and solvent naphtha 55.05pc.

Meanwhile, cigarette production soared 21.79pc YoY in August, while that of cement went by 16.84pc. In pharmaceuticals, output of syrups rose by 1.79pc, injections 24.25pc and capsules 8.65pc. The output of tablets declined 8.83pc.

The production of tea and vegetable ghee dipped 7.73pc and 1.67pc, respectively, whereas that of cooking oil increased by 5.46pc.

At the same time, production of electronic goods contracted in August due to demand slowdown of items. These included refrigerators, deep freezers, air-conditioners, electric bulbs, tubes, fans, motors, meters, switch gears, TV sets etc.

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Ghulam Abbas
The writer is a member of the staff at the Islamabad Bureau. He can be reached at [email protected]
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