Exports may improve in the coming months: Sitharaman

Sitharaman said exports are likely to improve in near-term depending upon pick up in global demand

The Dollar Business Bureau

Drop in outbound shipments have bottomed out and exports are likely to see gradual improvement in the near-term depending upon how demand picks up globally, Nirmala Sitharaman, Minister for Commerce and Industry said on Wednesday.

The Minister said that the improvement in global demand is not as much as “we would expect it to be”.

“Problems continue in several countries. The economy of Brazil is in trouble. The European Union (EU) is coping with the after effects of UK’s exit (Brexit). The UK itself is looking to start fresh discussions,” she said.

“So while there is hope…the exports having bottomed out and its now showing signs of improvement, (but) will still have some way to go before they really steadily move upwards,” Sitharaman told PTI.

Exports declined consecutively for the 18th month in May, though slightly by 0.79 percent to $22.17 billion as various non-oil segments such as engineering, gems and jewellery witnessed an increase in outward shipments.

Federation of Indian Export Organisation (FIEO) has also stated that drop in outward shipments has mainly been arrested and exports of non-oil products have become positive after a long time.

Since December 2014, exports have been declining due to sluggish global demand and drop in oil prices. However, the pace of contraction has slowed down, since December 2015.

During the period of April-May 2016, the exports decreased by 3.74 percent to $42.73 billion.

The major sectors which are still witnessing a negative growth trend include textiles, pharmaceuticals and some agricultural products.

The Dollar Business Bureau - Jul 14, 2016 12:00 IST