Export Growth at 8-Month Low

Rupee appreciation and GST regime related disruptions slowed India's export growth to an eight-month low in July. Exports grew 3.94% in July to $22.5 billion. Imports rose faster at 15.4% to $33.9 billion leaving a trade gap of $11.4 billion in July compared with $7.6 billion in the year ago period and $12.9 billion in May. Gold imports rose 95% in June to $2.1 billion.

Major commodity groups of export showing positive growth over the corresponding month of last year are engineering goods (15.16%), petroleum products (20.27%), organic & inorganic chemicals (20.67%), cotton yarn made-ups, handloom products (5.39%) and marine products (30.53%).

The widening of the merchandise trade deficit was primarily led by higher imports of gold, coal, electronic goods, iron & steel.

India's export numbers have come when China's exports and imports slowed down in July.

For the first week of July, exports worth millions of dollars were stuck in factories due to confusion over customs norms under GST.

Oil import was valued at $7.84 billion in July, an increase of 15% over the same month in 2016.

Cumulative export during April-July of 2017-18 rose by 8.91% to $94.75 billion while import increased by 28.3% to $146.25 billion, leaving a trade deficit of $51.5 billion. The pace of growth of non-oil, non-gold imports slowed to a five month low of 11.6%, indicating domestic demand losing strength.

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