India may have its share of infrastructure problems, but the situation in the country is better off than the rest of South Asia when it comes to electricity supply.
New data from the World Bank based on a survey of 9,281 firms shows that on average, Indian companies witnessed 13.8 electrical outages every month, compared to 17.2 power cuts on average in the rest of South Asia. What’s more, the duration of the outages was two hours on average in India, compared to 2.4 hours in the rest of the region.
While the global average for electrical outages was lower than in India, the average duration of an electrical outage worldwide is 4.5 hours, far longer than what Indian companies experience.
If one calculates the total duration of power outages from the data, it emerges that Indian firms – which experience a total of 27.6 hours of power cuts every month – is not so badly off compared to the rest of the world, where the power usually goes off for around 24.8 hours every month on average.
It’s also significantly better than the rest of South Asia, where the power cuts add up to 41.3 hours every month.
The losses suffered by Indian firms due to power cuts as a percentage of annual sales is also lower than the South Asian and global averages, at 3.7 per cent.
This can be largely attributed to the fact that 46.5 per cent of Indian firms either own or share a generator, though utilisation is lower than what’s typically seen in South Asia and by all countries on average.
The situation is such that only 21.3 per cent of firms in India see electricity as a major constraint, compared to 39.3 per cent in South Asia and 33.6 per cent worldwide.