In the month of February 2019, India's manufacturing activity expanded to its fastest pace for over a year with a hike in new orders and outputs that boosted employment, according to a monthly survey. The Nikkei Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) that is compiled by IHS Markit, rose to a 14-month high of 54.3 in February from 53.9 in January.
It has been above the 50-mark threshold of the index, that separates growth from contraction, for 19 months now. The survey said that the upturn of the Indian manufacturing sector noted in January saw further growth in terms of production and sales in February along with the generation of employment.
The upturn of employment seen in February has been the best in six and a half years as goods producers sought to expand their output capacities to meet the strengthening demand from domestic and external sources.
The new orders sub-index increased to 56.9 in February, the highest in 2 and half years and encouraged the manufacturers to raise outputs at the fastest pace since December 2017.
This result has raised hopes that the improved manufacturing activity in the first two months of the calendar year 2019 would boost the GDP (gross domestic product) growth that slowed down to 6.6 percent for the quarter ended December 2018, according to government data released on Thursday.