India’s Container Trade Growth Slows To 1% In Q2: Maersk
A container ship sits docked at the Jawaharlal Nehru Port, in Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra, India. (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)  

India’s Container Trade Growth Slows To 1% In Q2: Maersk

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India's container trade growth slowed to 1 percent on account of various factors like growing trade tensions and slump in manufacturing sector, logistics firm AP Moller - Maersk said on Monday.

Besides, rural distress also impacted overall import-export growth, it added.

"India's containerized trade growth slowed to 1 percent (9 percent in the same period last year) in Q2 2019, due to a cocktail of international factors such as slowing trade growth, and growing trade tensions coupled with domestic factors like rural consumer distress, tightening liquidity and a slowdown in key manufacturing sectors," the company said in a statement.

West India delivered the highest growth with imports growing at 4 percent and exports at 11 percent, while North India delivered 1 percent growth in imports and reported a steep decline of 9 percent in exports, it said.

"South India registered 1 percent import growth and 2 percent export growth, while East India recorded 2 percent growth in imports and contracted by 1 percent in terms of exports," the statement said.

India's exports to China declined by 20 percent, led by a reduction in demand for India-made textiles and apparel, which were large export commodities in the corresponding period last year.

At the same time, imports from China contracted by 22 percent, it said, adding the increasing economic cooperation between India and Saudi Arabia led the latter to emerge as one of India's strongest export partners in Q2 2019, growing by 74 percent, with vegetables and tiles, stone & glass exports from India leading this growth.

"The overall deceleration of trade growth reflects a broad-based slowdown across key economic sectors. Amidst increasing global volatility, a slower local economy and the U.S.' withdrawal of preferential access for certain Indian products, India's import-export trade is expected to continue to face headwinds in the coming months," Steve Felder, Managing Director, Maersk South Asia said.

However, the commerce ministry's recently proposed export promotion scheme, a production-based support scheme, coupled with a weaker rupee, is expected to boost Make in India and benefit multiple industries, he said.

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