Global slowdown dents exports; foreign bound shipments down 24 percent

New Delhi, Oct 15 (IANS) Slowdown in global demand scenario and dip in prices of petroleum products dented India’s September merchandise exports which fell by 24.33 percent, official data showed on Thursday.

According to the data furnished by the commerce and industry ministry, India’s September merchandise exports fell to $21.84 billion from $28.86 billion worth of goods shipped out during the corresponding month of last year.

The data revealed that exports declined for the 10th-straight month in September.

“Subdued global demand has had a continuous negative impact on exports. Major economies, barring India and the US, are struggling. This has depressed international trade and impacted India’s exports,” said Devendra Kumar Pant, chief economist, India Ratings and Research (Ind-Ra).

“Petroleum products have become one of the major export items of the country, a decline in global growth and crude oil prices have impacted this segment.”

As per the commerce and industry ministry’s data, imports during the month under review plunged by 25.42 percent at $32.32 billion from $43.34 billion shipped-in during the corresponding month of 2014.

During September, the oil imports fell by 54.53 percent to $6.62 billion from $14.57 billion.

Non-oil imports also decreased by 10.68 percent to $25.69 billion from $28.76 billion shipped-in during the like month of 2014.

“The fall in crude oil prices is one of the prime reasons for the decline in the imports. The benefit of lower crude oil prices is negated by the lower demand of petroleum products which are a major export item of the country,” Pant added.

Trade deficit during September dipped on a year-on-year basis and stood at $10.47 billion, as compared to $14.47 billion in the corresponding month of last year.

The data disclosed that the cumulative exports for the period between April and September 2015-16 fell by 17.63 percent to $132.93 billion from $161.39 billion during last year’s corresponding period.

The cumulative figure for imports too showed a downward trajectory. It went down by 14.16 percent to $200.93 billion during the period under review from $234.08 billion.

Cumulatively trade deficit during the April-September period receded on a year-on-year basis and stood at $67.99 billion, as compared to $72.69 billion in the corresponding period of last year.

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