India’s November trade deficit narrows to $12.12 bn, exports shrinks to $26 bn

Indian worker
Francis Mascarenhas/Reuters

India’s exports fell by 0.34 percent to $25.98 billion in November, contracting for the fourth consecutive month, while imports declined for the sixth month in a row by 12.71 percent to $38.11 billion. It resulted in a trade deficit of $12.12 billion,  said government data released on Friday.

Oil imports fell 18.17 percent to $11.06 billion from $13.52 billion in the year-ago period, Reuters said and non-oil imports contracted 10.26 percent to $27.04 billion from $30.14 billion.

Though, gold imports increased by 6.59 percent to $2.94 billion in the month, poor shipments of petroleum, gems & jewellery and leather products lead to the deficit of 31 per cent this year which stood at $17.58 billion in November 2018. 

As many as 17 segments out of the 30 key sectors, showed contraction in exports in the month under review.

Shipments of petroleum products, gems and jewellery, fruits and vegetables, leather and leather products and ready-made garments of all textiles contracted by 13.12 percent, 8.14 percent, 15.10 percent, 5.29 percent and 6.52 percent respectively.

Overall trade deficit during April-November narrowed to $54.06 billion as against $82.47 billion in the year-ago period.

Registering 1.99 per cent decline, export value for the period of April-November 2019-20 was $211.93 billion against $216.23 billion during April-November 2018-19, suggested Business Standard.

Considering the global slowdown, more so in destination countries of Indian exports, Engineering Export Promotion Council (EEPC) chairman Ravi Sehgal told Mint, contracting export is no surprise. 

Though Modi 2.0 has promised a $5 trillion economy for the country, deepening crisis of external sector will put additional pressure on India’s growth, as GDP had slowed to an over six-year low of 4.5 per cent.


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