Trade deficit narrows to US$ 11.25 billion in December 2019India's merchandise exports declined for fifth straight month at 1.8% to US$ 27.36 billion in December 2019 over a year ago. Meanwhile, merchandise imports also dipped 8.8% to US$ 38.61 billion. The trade deficit narrowed 22.3% to US$ 11.25 billion in December 2019 from US$ 13.08 billion in December 2018.
Oil imports declined 0.8% to US$ 10.69 billion, while the non-oil imports dipped 11.6% to US$ 27.92 billion in December 2019 over December 2018. The share of oil imports in total imports was 27.7% in December 2019, compared with 26.0% in December 2018. The price of India's basket of crude oil increased 13.4% to US$ 65.52 per barrel in December 2019 over December 2018.
Among the non-oil imports, the major contributors to the overall dip in imports were transport equipment imports declining 30.1% to US$ 2.20 billion, coal, coke & briquettes 22.4% to US$ 1.76 billion, iron & steel 21.5% to US$ 1.12 billion, pearls, precious & semi-precious stones 12.0% to US$ 2.22 billion and organic & inorganic chemicals 14.6% to US$ 1.53 billion, while imports of non-ferrous metals also declined 18.2% to US$ 1.02 billion, metaliferrous ores & other minerals 22.5% to US$ 0.56 billion, artificial resins, plastic materials 10.3% to US$ 1.08 billion and crude & manufactured fertilizers 15.7% to US$ 0.62 billion.
Further, the imports of gold declined 3.9% to US$ 2.47 billion, silver 66.9% to US$ 0.11 billion, project goods 61.3% to US$ 0.11 billion, chemical material & products 5.1% to US$ 0.62 billion and electronic goods 1.4% to US$ 4.19 billion.
However, the imports have increased for vegetable oil by 16.2% to US$ 0.84 billion, medicinal & pharmaceutical products 15.3% to US$ 0.62 billion and electrical & non-electrical machinery 2.5% to US$ 3.16 billion in December 2019.
On exports front, the gems & jewellery recorded a decline in exports by 8.2% to US$ 2.41 billion, followed by petroleum products 4.2% to US$ 3.90 billion, plastic & linoleum 18.7% to US$ 0.62 billion, organic & inorganic chemicals 5.1% to US$ 1.89 billion and engineering goods 1.2% to US$ 7.07 billion.
The exports also declined for meat, dairy & poultry products by 17.7% to US$ 0.31 billion, mica, coal & other ores, minerals including processed minerals 16.9% to US$ 0.30 billion, rice 5.4% to US$ 0.62 billion, and leather & leather products 5.9% to US$ 0.41 billion and ceramic products & glassware 5.6% to US$ 0.26 billion.
However, the exports moved up for electronic goods by 30.4% to US$ 1.08 billion, drugs & pharmaceuticals 13.0% to US$ 1.88 billion, oil seeds 107.2% to US$ 0.22 billion and iron ore 85.3% to US$ 0.23 billion in December 2019.
Further, the exports of marine products also improved 7.8% to US$ 0.66 billion, RMG of all textiles 2.4% to US$ 1.41 billion, man-made yarn/fabrics/made-ups etc 7.9% to US$ 0.45 billion, spices 10.0% to US$ 0.29 billion and cotton yarn/fabrics/made-ups, handloom products etc 0.4% to US$ 0.89 billion in December 2019.
Merchandise exports in rupees declined 1.2% to Rs 194765 crore, while imports dipped 8.2% to Rs 274884 crore in December 2019 over December 2018. The trade deficit eased to Rs 80119 crore in December 2019 compared with Rs 92497 crore in December 2018.
India's merchandise exports fell 2.1% to US$ 239.29 billion, while merchandise imports declined 8.6% to US$ 357.39 billion in April-December 2019. The decline in imports was driven by a 11.6% fall in oil imports to US$ 95.69 billion. India's merchandise trade deficit eased to US$ 118.10 billion in April-December 2019 from US$ 146.53 billion in April-December 2018.
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