Exports rise 4.62% to $ 22.88 bn in Sept, imports fall 2.54%

The trade deficit has narrowed to $8.33 bn against the $10.16 bn in September last year.

The Dollar Business Bureau 

Merchandise exports have shown a sign of recovery, registering a year-on-year increase of 4.62 percent during September 2016 to $22.88 billion, after consecutively declining during the past two months. In the month of August 2016, exports of goods declined by 0.3 percent to $21.51 billion. 

The growth in exports is due to a substantial increase in the shipments of engineering goods, gems & jewellery, garments & textiles, handicrafts and fruits & vegetables. 

During the month of September, exports of gems & jewellery witnessed a growth of 23.39 percent, engineering goods (7.35 percent), garments & textiles (13.5 percent), handicrafts (24.68 percent) and fruits & vegetables (12.57 percent). 

In September, the imports fell by 2.54 percent to $31.22 billion compared to the same month in the previous year due to continuous drop in the non-oil imports. There was a decline in imports across various sectors, including transport equipment (-24.17 percent), project goods (-21.64 percent), gold (-9.59 percent), silver (-71.07 percent), electronic goods (-4.19 percent), textiles (-24.62 percent), fertilisers (-53.98 percent), chemicals (-11.12 percent) and iron & steel (-26.93 percent). 

However, the trade deficit has narrowed to $8.33 billion against the $10.16 billion in September last year. 

Commenting on the recent figures FIEO President SC Ralhan, said, “This is a very encouraging development as China, South Korea and many other exporting countries exhibited double digit decline in exports. What is more assuring is across sectors, growth in exports in about 20 of the major 30 product groups turned positive in September.” 

“If this trend continues, we can achieve $280 billion or even more in exports in the current fiscal. Sectors such as garments, gems & jewellery, chemicals, engineering, electronics, marine and plantations have contributed to increasing exports,” he added. 

In this financial year, exports had witnessed a growth in the month of June after a continuous decline for 18 months due to sluggish global demand. 

Though there has been an overall growth in merchandise exports in September, several products like meat, leather, petroleum products, man-made yarn, coal, rice, and oilseeds registered a dip. 

In the April-September period of 2016-17, overall exports declined 1.74 percent to $131.40 billion against the same period last financial year. In the given six-month period, total imports were at $174.40 billion, a decline of 13.77 percent compared to the same period last fiscal. 

Due to the steep decline in imports, trade deficit for the period April-September 2016-17 was at $43 billion lower by 37.26 percent than the deficit of $68.54 billion during the same period in last year.

The Dollar Business Bureau - Oct 15, 2016 12:00 IST