Wednesday 17 January 2018

Industrial output still growing as pharmaceuticals jumps by third

Peter Flanagan

IRELAND'S industrial output continued to grow in February, according to new figures from the Central Statistics Office.

The Industrial Production and Turnover indexes are used to measure the health of manufacturing industries.

The industrial production index reached 115.4 in February -- an increase of 1.3pc from January and up 13.7pc on February last year.

The turnover index dropped slightly to just over 94.3. The indexes are seen as a key indicator of the country's industrial strength as they allow the health of the sector to be measured in two clear numbers.

The "modern" sector, which is made up of a number of hi-tech and chemical sectors, made up the bulk of industrial growth, with an annual increase in production for the month of 18.5pc while the "traditional" sector experienced an increase of only 0.5pc compared with February last year.

Pharmaceuticals saw the biggest jump in production, with an increase of nearly a third, while the computer, electronic and optical products business experienced a drop of 32.3pc. The seasonally adjusted industrial turnover index had jumped nearly 15 points between December and January this year, but dropped back in February.

It was up just over 4pc in the three months to February when compared with the September to November period. On an annual basis turnover was 3.6pc lower when compared with February 2009.

The figures continue the upward trend in the industrial sector.

Last week, the Purchasing Managers Index indicated a return to growth and reached its highest point for more than two years.

Irish Independent

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