India’s April-November 2018 trade deficit widens to $129 billion

India recorded a $16.67 billion trade deficit in November 2018, taking overall trade deficit for the first eight months of the 2018-19 financial year to $129.13 billion.

The ballooning of the trade deficit comes on the back of over 61 per cent jump in the country’s oil import bill to $97.43 billion in April-November 2018-19 from $65.33 billion in April-November 2017-18.

India’s exports in November 2018 stood at $26.50 billion (Rs1,90,429.46 crore), compared to $26.29 billion (Rs1,70,541.01 crore) in November 2017-18, showing a growth of 0.80 per cent in dollar terms and an 11.66 per cent growth in rupee terms.

Cumulative value of exports for the period April-November 2018-19 stood at $217.52 billion (Rs15,14,369.74 crore) against $194.93 billion (Rs12,57,811.49 crore) during April-November 2017-18, showing a growth of 11.58 per cent in dollar terms and a 20.40 per cent growth in rupee terms.

Non-petroleum and non-gems and jewellery exports in November 2018 stood at $18.57 billion, compared to $19.32 billion in November 2017, showing a negative growth of 3.93 per cent. Non-petroleum and non-gems and jewellery exports in April-November 2018-19 stood at $156.55 billion against $143.77 billion in the corresponding period of 2017-18, an increase of 8.89 per cent.

Imports in November 2018 stood at $43.17 billion (Rs3,10,215.46 crore), which was 4.31 per cent higher in dollar terms and 15.55 per cent higher in rupee terms over imports worth $41.39 billion (Rs2,68,467.53 crore) in November 2017. Cumulative value of imports for April-November 2018-19 stood at $345.64 billion (Rs24,07,273.87 crore), against $301.31 billion (Rs19,44,355.48 crore) during the period April-November 2017-18, showing a growth of 14.71 per cent in dollar terms and a growth of 23.81 per cent in rupee terms.

Oil imports in November 2018 stood at $13.49 billion (Rs96,955.56 crore), a growth of 41.31 per cent in dollar terms and a 56.55 per cent growth in rupee terms, compared to $9.55 billion (Rs61,933.97 crore) in November 2017.

Oil imports in April-November 2018-19 stood at $97.43 billion (Rs6,79,769.26 crore), which was 49.14 per cent higher in dollar terms and 61.21 per cent higher in rupee terms compared to $65.33 billion (Rs4,21,667.12 crore), over the same period last year.

Shekhar Ghosh is consulting editor, Indoasiancommodities.com. He has edited and written for publications like Business India, Business Standard, Business Today, Outlook and many other international publications. He can be reached at shekhar.ghosh@indoasiancommodities.in.

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