FM concerned at slackening industrial growth numbers

New Delhi: Finance minister Pranab Mukherjee today expressed concern at massive decline in industrial growth, which almost halved to 4.4% in September against 8.2% a year ago, reports PTI.

"We will have to analyse why that is happening. And after that considered comments can be made. But it's a matter of concern," Mr Mukherjee told reporters.

In the month of September, there was all-round decline in growth numbers across segments.

While manufacturing, which comprises of almost 80% of the IIP, grew at slower rate of 4.5% in September against 8.3% a year ago, electricity generation expanded by just 1.7% against 7.5%. Mining output rose by 5.2% against 7.4% in the year-ago period.

Also, capital goods production contracted by 4.2% in September, which may have a bearing on industrial growth figures for times to come.


Amul butter: Where’s the girl??

 When a fabulous brand like Amul butter, which already has a huge asset in the Amul girl, reduces itself to such trash on TV, it leaves you more angry than sad

So, the Amul butter makers find no place for the cute girl in the new TV commercial. That is quite strange indeed… the girl has been the brand's mascot for years and years, she's become synonymous with Amul butter, and has served the brand well in the outdoor campaign. In fact, after all these years, Amul's topical, witty hoardings still enthuse a lot of commuters.

But they have dumped a huge asset, and one watched the Amul commercial with a great deal of expectation. In the sense that the creative better be more than outstanding for it not to find a place for the little one. And criminally, they've released a seriously banal ad, and it's back to the tired, done-to-death 'desh ka butter' positioning.

The same old 'all of India feeds on Amul'. Something 'Hamara Bajaj' began decades ago, something the ad world still can't seem to let go of. Probably because it's such an easy-to-do, safe idea.

All that the maha boring commercial does is to feature assorted desis applying makhan on various cuisines. And then happen the expected food shots and collages of different people devouring the dishes laced with 'real butter'. Pav bhaji, brun maska, sandwiches, masala dosas, etc.

You can complete the boring menu. And they have tried to pep things up using the voiceover of a waiter. And that only adds to the misery.

Sounds like an extremely irritating radio spot. The sort that makes you reach out for your CDs in the car, and log off from FM radio for good.

Yes, agreed, there is a lot of ordinary advertising going around. In fact, 90% of ads are usually mediocre and that's not just the case with India. And it more often than not happens because brand managers are characteristically risk averse. And they shy away from adventure.

So fine, one lives with this reality. But when a fabulous brand like Amul butter, which already has a huge asset in the Amul girl, and which already does wonderful work in the outdoor media, reduces itself to such trash on the TV, it leaves you more angry than sad. This is nothing short of 'advertising murder' so to speak. What a waste of a wonderful opportunity, what a criminal waste of a power mascot!

And all I can think of now is the ridicule the pissed-off Amul girl would heap on the TV commercial in one of her hoardings.




7 years ago

All you're left with is the memory of the Amul moppet to cherish. It saddens and chokes me to say she seems to have been sent with Eustace who had created her and who passed away not even a year ago!



In Reply to ucd 7 years ago

Hey ucd please tell us more about Eustace and the creation of the amul mopped. I am a student of advertising and it would be lovely to hear the story!


In Reply to sania 7 years ago

See Margaret's helping hand below.


In Reply to sania 7 years ago

Eustace passed away sometime ago and I have not seen the "utterly, butterly delicious" Amul moppet (not mopped!) since then. There were abundant write-ups in the press upon Eustace's death which gave the whole story. You may get them on the net. Or, if you contact the D'Cunha family of advertising fame who lives or lived in Colaba or one of the brothers - Gerson da Cunha - you may get more help than I can give you. Or, try Amin on 2641 2559, 2642 0986 at "Amore" on Perry Cross Road, Bandra which is where Eustace used to live.


In Reply to ucd 7 years ago

You could also speak to Conrad, his (Eustace's) brother who works at XIC on 22622877.

G20 likely to come out against competitive devaluation

Seoul: Meeting under the shadow of a raging currency war and controversy around global trade imbalance, the summit of the Group of Twenty (G20) leaders is expected to come out with a consensus document against competitive devaluation and to put in place a process to analyse economic problems and recommend steps to restore balance, reports PTI.


As the summit opened this morning after serious differences surfaced in the run-up over the rate of Chinese yuan and US proposals for capping the current account deficit of countries that distort global trade, negotiators were working hard to bring out a joint communiqué that is likely to say the nations would “move towards more market determined exchange rates systems” and keep away from competitive devaluation of currencies.


Prime minister Manmohan Singh, who is leading the Indian delegation to the summit of the grouping of advanced and emerging economies, spoke out his forthright views on the issue when he told the G-20 nations that “we must at all costs avoid competitive devaluation and resist any resurgence of protectionism”.


While China has strongly resisted US attempts to persuade it to revalue the yuan on the ground a lower yuan gave it unfair advantage in exports, the US injected a new element by pumping in $600 billion into the market which effectively will depreciate the dollar.


Planning Commission deputy chairman Montek Singh finds that the currency war was more in the media and not on the G-20 table.


He said the final communiqué would be a strong endorsement of the Mutual Assessment Process (MAP) mandated by the Toronto Summit, by which the countries will evolve “indicative guidelines” measuring economic imbalances so that timely action could be taken to remove imbalances in global economy.


Mr Ahluwalia told journalists that prime minister Singh was keen on working out the MAP “as quickly as possible” before the next summit under French presidency.


He ruled out the possibility of the summit fixing a cap on current account deficit or surplus for countries.


The Mutual Assessment Process is a process by which the nations make a projection of their economies on trade deficit or surplus and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) would analyse and recommend correctives.


But it would not be IMF conditionalities as in global governance sovereignty of countries mattered the most when decisions are taken.


In his speech, the prime minister said it was not easy to reach agreement on what are sustainable current account balances for individual countries given the structural differences across countries, the many uncertainties that prevail, and the multiple goals that each country has to balance.


"It is even more difficult to agree on a particular combination of policies to achieve these targets," he said.


It is a country-led projection and the MAP would see whether it is entirely possible to raise or reduce surpluses and deficits. There are also no penalties on countries in regard to implementation of issues being discussed in the MAP.


The prime minister's views on channelling surplus reserves in advanced economies for infrastructure building in developing countries has been received well at the summit.


The African Union, which was represented at the summit and World Bank chairman Robert Zoellick specifically, drew attention to this idea hailing it.


The prime minister was also appreciative of the issue of development brought on the agenda by hosts South Korea saying it was a long term issue the nations should focus on.


On current account deficit or surplus debate, Mr Ahluwalia said it depended on which country mounts huge figures on this account and what is its impact on the global system.


India, he said, for example is comfortable with even an increasing deficit because it contributes to rebalancing the global economy.


The Seoul Communiqué is expected to also endorse the basic elements of a G-20 framework for strong sustainable and balanced growth, including an ambitious outcome in the form of the Seoul Action Plan.


The final document is also likely to say that the G-20 will pursue policies to reduce and current account imbalances and to give developing nations like India and China more say at the International Monetary Fund IMF) by shifting the voting rights by about six per cent in favour of developing nations.


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