Recording positive growth for the fourth month in a row, India’s exports rose by 5.72 per cent to $23.9 billion in December on better performance by petroleum, engineering and pharmaceuticals segments. Imports too grew by 0.46 per cent to $34.25 billion during the month under review, leaving a trade deficit of $10.36 billion as against $11.5 billion in December 2015.
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Exports of engineering products rose by about 20 per cent, petroleum by 8.22 cent and pharmaceuticals 12.49 chemicals, according to the commerce ministry data. Commenting on the figures, the Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) said that global sentiments have started showing positive signs and the US Fed rate hike and demonetisation have very limited impact on exports.
“Looking at the continuous positive trend of growth in exports, we are on our course to achieve exports of about $270-280 billion during the current fiscal,” FIEO President S C Ralhan said. During April-December period, exports grew marginally by 0.75 per cent $198.8 billion. However, imports dipped 7.42 per cent to $275.3 billion.
Trade deficit during the nine-month period stood at $76.54 billion as against $100 billion in the same period last year. Oil imports were valued at $7.645 billion during December 2016 which was 14.61 per cent higher than oil imports valued at $6.670 billion in December 2015, the trade data released by Commerce and Industry Ministry showed. Non-oil imports were estimated at $26.608 billion in December, down by 2.98 per cent than that of $27.425 billion in December, 2015. Gold imports during December declined by 48.49 per cent to $1.96 billion.