OPEC Current Affairs - 2020

COVID-19: Fifth Recession of India

Since Independence in 1947, India has faced four recessions. According to Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the recessions occurred in 1958, 1966, 1973 and 1980.


Recession is defined as the fall in economic activities of the country along with decline in sales, income and employment. India has so far seen four such negative GDP growth. In 1958, the GDP growth was -1.2%, in 1966 it was -3.6%, in 1973 it was -0.32% and in 1980 the GDP growth was -5.2%.

1958: Balance of Payment Crisis

The Recession that India faced in 1957 was due to Balance of Payment problem. It was mainly due to weak monsoon that affected the agricultural production badly. India then imported 60 lakh tonnes of food grains. This widened trade deficit of the country that in turn reduced foreign reserved to half.

1966: Drought

India fought wars with China in 1962 and with Pakistan in 1965. The wars affected the economy badly and eventually led to drought. The food grain production fell by 20% in 1966 due to droughts. India relied on its foreign imports to rescue its starving population.

1973: Energy Crisis

In 1973, the world faced its first energy crisis. The OAPEC (Organisation of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries) proclaimed an oil embargo. Embargo is an official ban on trade with a particular country. The organization aimed at countries that supported Israel. This led to increase in oil prices by about 400%. India’s oil imports increased from 414 million USD in 1972 to 900 million USD in 1973.

1980: Oil Shock

The world witnessed an oil shock for the second time in 1980. This was due to decrease in oil production due to Iranian revolution. It further increased due to the Iran-Iraq war that followed the revolution. This created Balance of Payment crisis for India.

COVID-19 crisis

The current Economic crisis faced by India is the worst of all the previous recessions. The international organizations expect India’s growth to contract by 5% to 6.8%

CIPET renamed as Central Institute of Petrochemicals Engineering and Technology

The Central Institute of Plastics Engineering and Technology has now been renamed as Central Institute of Petrochemicals, Engineering and Technology. The name change was registered under Tamil Nadu Societies Registration Act, 1975.


The main objective of CIPET is to contribute towards growth of plastics. It also focuses on education and research programme. The institute will focus on innovative plastic-based solutions.


The CIPET also receives United Nations Development Programme. Apart from UNDP, the support to CIPET is also received from OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Corporation), World Bank and UNIDO (United Nations Industrial Development Organization).


United Nations Industrial Development Organization was established in 1966. It is one of the 15 specialized agencies of the United Nations. The UNIDO aims to fulfil the Sustainable Development Goals.

Petrochemicals in India

The Petrochemical industry is growing fast in India. There are four main categories in the petrochemical industry. This includes polymers, elastomers, synthetic fibres and surfactant intermediate. Mumbai is the hub of petrochemical industry.