The volumes for natural gas players - Gujarat State Petronet and Petronet LNG - have recovered to almost 90% of the levels they had in pre-Covid-19 lockdown time on the back of demand from the industry, said the official.
Nearly 80% industrial units across Gujarat have resumed operations following the state government’s permission to function with 100% workforce outside containment areas as part of unlockdown-1, according to Gujarat’s industries commissioner Rahul Gupta.
“We have removed odd-even system for textile and other markets. Industries across the sectors are now gradually returning to normalcy. Demands for power and natural gas have also gone up which indicates increase in industrial activities,” said Gupta.
As per an official in the state energy department, the peak power demand in the state has crossed 340 million units. Last year’s peak demand was around 390 million units in May end and beginning of June. With more industrial units opening up, current year’s demand would catch up with last year’s figure in next 10 to 15 days, said the official. The volumes for natural gas players – Gujarat State Petronet and Petronet LNG – have recovered to almost 90% of the levels they had in pre-Covid-19 lockdown time on the back of demand from the industry, said the official.
On labour related issue, Gupta said that unskilled and semi-skilled workers are being sourced locally and as far as migration of skilled workforce is concerned, there are still some problems. With industries resuming work, reports related to migrant labourers returning in some industrial sectors are also coming in, he added.
Morbi ceramic industry is witnessing reverse trend as migrant labourers are rejoining work. At the Asia’s largest ceramic cluster where nearly 1,000 units are situated, over 60% units have resumed operations, though with limited capacity, says Nilesh Jetparia, president of Morbi Ceramic Association, adding that with unlockdown process beginning, the ceramic industry in Gujarat is expecting fresh demand in coming days.
Textile markets outside containment zones in Ahmedabad and Surat have resumed operations without any restrictions from Monday onwards, says Devkishan Mangani, chairman, textile committee chairman, Gujarat chamber of commerce.
Textile processing units in Gujarat would take some to restart due to dearth of demand and labour shortage, says Nitin Thakker, president of Ahmedabad Textile Processor’s association, adding, that despite this nearly 30% units could reinitiate operations to clear pending orders.
“Engineering, casting, forging and auto part makers are gradually reopening their units. Though the government has already given them permission, but most of these units situated in Rajkot, Bhavnagar, Surendranagar, Jamnagar, Ahmedabad and Vadodara are functioning at below 50% capacity. They are facing issues of demand, labourers and at the same time they need to follow guidelines related to Covid -19,” said Piyush Tamboli, president of Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Gujarat chapter.
Hospitality industry in the state will be able to start operation from June 8.