Industrial Development: Petro-Chemicals Industry, Industrial Clusters, Industrial Self-Reliance, Impact of Economic Liberalization

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Petro-Chemicals Industry

  • Petro-chemicals industry is one of the fastest growing industries of India. This industry has revolutionised the industrial scene by providing the products which are substituting the traditional raw materials like wood, glass, and metals. Its products meet various needs of the people at low cost. Petro-chemicals are derived from petroleum or natural gas. We use a variety of products from morning till evening made from petrochemicals. Toothbrushes, toothpaste, combs, hairpins, soap cases, plastic mugs, garments, ball point pens, detergents, electric switches, lipstick, insecticides, bags, bed covers, and foam are some of the goods made from petro-chemicals.

  • Indian Petro-Chemical Corporation has set up a huge petro-chemical complex near Vadodara producing a wide range of products. Besides Vadodara, Gandhar, and Hazira in Gujarat and Nagathone in Maharashtra are other important centres of petro-chemical industry. India is self-sufficient in the production of petrochemicals.

  • Crude oil has no value unless it is refined, while refining crude oil, thousands of products like kerosene, diesel, lubricants, and raw material for petro-chemical industry are derived. India has at present 18 refineries.

  • These refineries are at Digboi, Bongaigaon, and Nunamati in Assam, Mumbai (two) in Maharashtra, Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh, Barauni in Bihar, Koyali in Gujarat, Mathura in Uttar Pradesh, Panipat in Haryana, Kochi in Kerala, Mangalore in Karnataka, and Chennai in Tamil Nadu. The only private oil refineries belong to Reliance Industries Ltd. is located at Jamnagar in Gujarat.

Industrial Clusters

There are regional variations in the levels of industrial development in India. Indian industries have concentrated in clusters at some locations. Most industrial regions in India have developed in the hinterlands of some major ports like Kolkata, Mumbai and Chennai. These industrial regions have all the advantages like availability of raw materials, energy, capital, and markets. Six major industrial regions emerged out of which three are in the hinterlands of ports. The six major industrial regions are as follows:

  • Hooghly Industrial Region

  • Mumbai – Pune Industrial Region

  • Ahmedabad – Vadodara Region

  • Madurai – Coimbatore – Bangalore Region

  • Chhota Nagpur Plateau Region

  • Delhi and Adjoining Region

Besides these major industrial regions, there are 15 minor industrial regions and 15 industrial districts.

Industrial Self Reliance

  • Industrial self-reliance means that the people of India establish and operate industries with their own technical knowledge, finances, and using machines manufactured in our own country without depending on others.

  • The Government of India formulated an Industrial Policy in 1956 with the objectives of increasing industrial output, generating employment, dispersal of industries, removing regional imbalances in the industrial development, and the development of village and small-scale industries.

  • Through planned development of Industries, we now manufacture several types of industrial goods. A major breakthrough has been achieved in the production of capital goods. India is now self-reliant in the production of heavy machines and equipment used in mining, irrigation, power projects, transport and communication. We use machines fabricated in India for cement, textile, iron and steel, and sugar industries etc.

  • Public sector has played an important role in achieving industrial self-reliance. Iron and steel, railway equipment, petroleum, coal, and fertilizer industries have been developed in this sector. These industries were established in industrially backward regions. During the seventh five-year plan an emphasis was laid on high technology, high value addition, and knowledge-based industries like electronics, advanced machine tools, and telecommunications.

Impact of Economic Liberalization

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  • The process of industrialization in India can be divided into two parts– before and after 1992. During the first forty years after independence the Indian economy had diversified and expanded very fast. But this growth was characterized by rigid controls and regulations.

  • In August 1992, Government of India took a bold step by changing its economic policies from state control to market forces. A need was felt to give more responsibility to private capital and enterprise, both domestic as well as foreign. In response to this, the New Industrial Policy of liberalization, privatisation, and globalization was adopted in August 1992. The immediate cause of this changes in economic policy was to tide over balance of payment crises but having wide social, economic, political, and geographical implications.

  • Liberalization means a reduced role for the government and a greater role for the market, or the liberal attitude of the government for the establishment and running of industries. It was touted as a panacea for the ills of Indian economy. However, after 15 years of following the path of literalization, the results are not that sweet. The gap between the rich and the poor has increased. Production of goods of mass consumption has not improved. Employment opportunities have not increased at the desired rate. In privatisation there will be transfer of ownership of public enterprises to private capital, opening of more industrial areas to private capital and enterprise. The main aim of privatisation is to make use of privately-owned resources for collective welfare of the people.

  • Globalization which stands in the current phase for increasing integration between different economies of the world. The economic gap between different nations is reduced by removing all restrictions between nations on the movement of goods, services, capital, and technology. Globalization has made significant impact on consumption patterns and lifestyle of the people. Now a days the whole world has become a market. Globalization has also affected on value system.

In brief, it can be said that

  • The processing of natural resources into more useful items is called manufacturing. Economic development of a country is directly linked with the level of industrial development. In India the share of manufacturing industries in GDP has been increasing, over the period, especially in post-economic reforms period. Before independence, India was industrially less developed. But after independence India initiated industrial development in a planned manner during its Five-Year Plans. Today, India exports a large number of industrial goods to different countries of the world.

  • Industries can be classified into different categories on the basis of sources of raw material, ownership, functions, size of industry, weight of raw material, and finished products. Since India is still an agricultural country, it has developed various agro-based industries such as cotton textile, woollen textile, jute textile, and sugar industry. Cotton textile industry is the largest organised sector industry in India. India is also endowed with various minerals, enabling the country to establish various mineral based industries such as iron and steel, heavy engineering, automobiles, chemicals, and petro-chemical industry.

  • The Government of India framed policies which have made India self-reliant in various sectors of industries. Liberalization, globalization, and privatization have helped in bringing foreign capital and modern technology into the country. Private enterprise is being allowed to enter into various core sectors. This has resulted into the faster growth of industrial sector.

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