ISLAMABAD - Pakistan’s economic growth has currently slowed down that could be gauged from the decline in growth of large-scale manufacturing (LSM) during first couple of months (July and August) of the ongoing fiscal year.

The LSM growth declined by 1.17 percent during July and August period of the FY2019, the data shared by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) revealed on Wednesday. Meanwhile, the LSM growth went down by 3.33 percent during August 2018 as against the corresponding period of previous year.

The decline in growth of big industrial production in the first two months of the current fiscal year is hyping fears that economic growth in the country may slow down. The State Bank of Pakistan had recently noted that recent fiscal and monetary measures are likely to affect large scale manufacturing. The central bank had noted that after incorporating the latest information on demand and supply, SBP projects the real GDP growth for FY19 at around 5.0 percent.

The PBS computes the quantum index numbers of the LSM on the basis of latest production data of 112 items received from various sources, including the Oil Companies Advisory Committee (OCAC), Ministry of Industries and Production and provincial Bureau of Statistics. The LSM data, provided by the Ministry of Industries and Production for 36 items, showed growth of 1.64 percent during the first two months of the FY2019 over a preceding year. Similarly, the data provided by the provincial Bureaus of Statistics for 65 items showed growth of 0.81 percent over the same period. The output of 11 items, whose data is provided by the Oil Companies Advisory Committee, had decreased by 0.35 percent during the period under review.

As far as the main drivers of the LSM sector's growth during the period under review are concerned, electronics sector recorded growth of 15.12 percent followed by engineering products that recorded 11.65 percent growth. Similarly, food, beverages and tobacco sector grew by 7.71 percent paper and board grew by 5.82 percent. Meanwhile, rubber and leather products had also recorded growth during the period under review.

On the other hand, wood products recorded negative growth of 56.82 percent, fertilizer sector 8.43 percent, pharmaceutical by 8.66 percent and non-metallic mineral products growth went down by 6.83 percent. Similarly, growth of iron & steel products, automobiles, coke & petroleum products and textile sector had also recorded negative growth during first two months of the ongoing fiscal year.

In the automobile sector, the production of tractors went down by 13.43 percent, trucks 9.69pc and motorcycle production declined by 12.64pc. However, production of buses enhanced by 3.5 percent, jeeps and cars by 4.08pc, light commercial vehicles 3.07pc during July and August period of the ongoing fiscal year.  In non-metallic mineral products, cement posted a negative growth of 6.72 percent. In the food, beverages and tobacco segment, a decrease of 10.16pc was recorded in cooking oil production. Other items that witnessed a negative growth were tea blended by 3.61pc and wheat & grain milling 1.03pc.