Propelled by engineering goods and petroleum sectors, India’s exports rose 12.4% to $27 billion in December even as the trade deficit touched a three-year high.
Imports too surged significantly to $42 billion, up 21%, on increased inbound shipments of crude oil and gold. Exporters body FIEO said India is on course to reaching the $300-billion milestone for overseas shipments.
The trade deficit or difference between imports and exports was $15 billion, up about 41% year-on-year.
FIEO said that positive growth for the second month in a row, after a fall in October, shows resilience of the Indian exporters.
“Since we have already achieved exports worth $224 billion in first nine months of the fiscal and global trade growth remains robust in 2018, we are on our course to achieve the milestone of $300 billion in 2017-18,” said FIEO president Ganesh Kumar Gupta.
The exports had totalled $275 billion in 2016-17, up from $262 billion in the preceding industry. Exports of engineering goods as well as petroleum products showed an increase of over 25% in December. However, shipments of ready-made garments declined by 8% to $1.33 billion last month. Gold imports surged by 72% to $3.3 billion last month as against $2 billion in December 2016.
The imports of petroleum products and crude oil increased by a significant 35% to $ 10 billion in December, from $8 billion a year ago.