Kerala's Industrialisation
A strong and diversified manufacturing sector is a crucial pillar for the economy, for domestic production, exports and employment growth. Increase in the share of manufacturing in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is a key feature of modern economic growth. The manufacturing sector in Kerala is relatively small in size. The manufacturing sector accounted for a share of only 12.5 per cent of Kerala's Gross State Value Added (GSVA) (at constant 2011-12 prices) in 2019-20. 
A Revival in Manufacturing in Kerala
At the same time, it needs to be highlighted that there has been a steady increase in the size of Kerala's manufacturing sector, in value terms, especially so over the last four years. The share of manufacturing in Kerala's GSVA increased from 9.8 per cent in 2014-15 to 12.5 per cent in 2019-20. 
Workers in traditional industries, importantly coir, cashew and handloom, form a substantial share of Kerala's manufacturing workforce. 
There has been a substantial reduction over the years in the size of the workforce engaged in traditional industries in Kerala. This is because of structural problems faced by some of these industries (such as cashew) as well as the withdrawal of younger generation of educated workers from the traditional industries.
At the same time, it is notable that a new set of modern industries are growing in size in Kerala. The top industries in Kerala with respect to value added are chemicals, refined petroleum products, rubber and plastic products, electronic products, and pharmaceuticals and medicinal botanical products. Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited's (BPCL)-Kochi Refinery has been undergoing a major expansion of its refining and petrochemical production capabilities and this holds great promise for the chemical and allied industries in Kerala. Between 2011-12 and 2016- 17, value added by refined petroleum products increased by eight times in Kerala. In fact, growth of value added by the manufacturing sector as a whole as well as a number of industries including chemicals, garments, pharmaceuticals, furniture, jewellery and medical instruments was much faster in Kerala compared to the corresponding national averages.
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Source : Economic Review 2020