Millennium Post

Sept gold imports rise 450%, push up trade gap to 18-month high

India's exports grew marginally by 2.73 per cent in September, but a surge in gold imports pushed the trade deficit to about 18-month high of $14.2 billion.

Overall, imports jumped by about 26 per cent, the highest increase in about last three-and-a-half-years, to $43.15 billion in September, 2014.

Gold imports in the month under review increased manifold to $3.75 billion compared to $682.5
million in same month last year. Exporters cited global conditions for slowdown in exports growth.

'Exports (growth) is disappointing. It is primarily due to global factors. WTO has downwardly revised global trade forecast for 2014 to 3.1 per cent as against 4.7 per cent predicted earlier. Moreover, softening of crude prices, which is good for Indian economy, has also contributed to decline in petroleum exports,' FIEO President Rafeeq Ahmed said.

India's exports stood at $28.9 billion in September. Trade deficit in September, 2013, was $6.12 billion.

Earlier, the deficit had touched a high of $20.1 billion in May 2013. Similarly, the previous highest import growth was in November 2011 at 29.1 per cent.

During April-September period, exports registered a growth of 6.47 per cent to $163.7 billion.

Imports during the period grew by 1.57 per cent to $234 billion, leaving a trade deficit of $70.39 billion in the first half of the current fiscal. India's export growth had slipped by 2.35 per cent at $26.95 billion in August.

Oil imports grew by 9.7 per cent in September to $14.49 billion. Non-oil imports too grew by 36.2 per cent to $28.6 billion. Meanwhile, India's services exports in August 2014 were almost flat from a year earlier at $12.24 billion, according to data released from the RBI.

The services exports by Indian firms were at $12.31 billion in August 2013. However, import of services during the month rose by 7.5 per cent from a year ago to $6.77 billion, as per the RBI data on International Trade in Services.

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