Trade deficit widens to US$ 16.67 billion in November 2018

India’s merchandise exports rose 0.8% to US$ 26.50 billion in November 2018 over a year ago. Meanwhile, merchandise imports moved up 4.3% to US$ 43.17 billion. The trade deficit increased 10.4% to US$ 16.67 billion in November 2018 from US$ 13.83 billion in November 2017.

Oil imports galloped 41.3% to US$ 13.49 billion, while the non-oil imports declined 6.8% to US$ 29.68 billion in November 2018 over November 2017. The share of oil imports in total imports surged to 31.3% in November 2018, compared with 23.9% in November 2017. The price of India’s basket of crude oil increased 6.7% to US$ 65.40 per barrel in November 2018 over November 2017.

Among the non-oil imports, the major contributors to the overall rise in imports were coal, coke & briquettes Imports rising 12.5% to US$ 2.25 billion, iron & steel 17.6% to US$ 1.48 billion, fertilizers, crude & manufactured 46.6% to US$ 0.68 billion, project goods 197.8% to US$ 0.33 billion, electrical & non-electrical machinery 7.7% to US$ 2.91 billion and organic & inorganic chemicals 10.8% to US$ 2.00 billion.

On exports front, the petroleum products recorded an increase in exports by 42.7% to US$ 5.14 billion, followed by electronic goods 37.1% to US$ 0.79 billion, organic & inorganic chemicals 12.3% to US$ 1.87 billion, plastic & linoleum 28.6% to US$ 0.78 billion and RMG of all textiles 9.0% to US$ 1.13 billion. The exports also improved for ceramic products & glassware by 45.4% to US$ 0.24 billion, drugs & pharmaceuticals 3.2% to US$ 1.48 billion, spices 13.7% to US$ 0.28 billion, mica, coal & other ores, minerals including processed minerals 3.9% to US$ 0.31 billion and oil meals 7.1% to US$ 0.17 billion in November 2018.

However, the exports declined for engineering goods by 16.4% to US$ 5.93 billion, gems & jewellery 16.9% to US$ 2.80 billion, meat, dairy & poultry products 31.3% to US$ 0.36 billion, rice 23.1% to US$ 0.42 billion, marine products 15.1% to US$ 0.64 billion and cotton yarn/fabrics/made-ups, handloom products 5.3% to US$ 0.83 billion in November 2018.

Further, the exports declined for fruits & vegetables by 24.9% to US$ 0.16 billion, leather & leather products 5.2% to US$ 0.40 billion, and man-made yarn/fabrics/made-ups etc 2.9% to US$ 0.37 billion in November 2018.

Merchandise exports in Rupees increased 11.7% to Rs 190429 crore, while imports moved up 15.6% to Rs 310215 crore in November 2018 over November 2017. The trade deficit jumped to Rs 119786 crore in November 2018 compared with Rs 89700 crore in November 2017.

India’s merchandise exports increased 11.1% to US$ 217.52 billion, while merchandise imports moved up 15.5% to US$ 345.64 billion in April-November 2018. An increase in imports was driven by a 48.0% jump in oil imports to US$ 97.43 billion. India’s merchandise trade deficit increased to US$ 128.13 billion in April-November 2018 from US$ 102.05 billion in April-November 2017.