India Trade Deficit Surges In September As Imports Rebound
India trade deficit surged in September as imports rebounded in line with a recovery in the broader economy.
The trade deficit in September stood at $22.94 billion, compared to $13.9 billion in August. According to ICRA, the monthly deficit in September is at an all-time high.
Imports soared to $56.38 billion, an increase of 84.75% over a year ago. Compared to September 2019, imports were higher by 49.58%.
Exports rose to $33.44 billion, an increase of 21.35% over a year ago and 28.51% higher than September 2019.
All major categories of imports, including oil and gold, rose during the month, which provides encouraging signals about demand, said Aditi Nayar, chief economist at ICRA. "The surge also likely reflects pent-up demand and/or inventory restocking prior to the festive season," she said, adding that the pace of rise in imports may moderate in the coming months.
Non-petroleum exports in September stood at $28.53 billion, 18.72% higher than a year ago and 26.32% above September 2019 levels.
Non-petroleum imports were at $38.95 billion, a rise of 57.73% over September 2020. These imports were 36.14% above September 2019 levels.
Non-petroleum and non-gems and jewellery exports were at $25.29 billion, 18.59% higher than a year ago and 33.14% above the September 2019 levels.
Non-oil, non-gold, silver and precious metal imports were at $30.71 billion, 39.61% above September 2020 levels and 22.9% above September 2019 levels.
Category-wise trade data is released later in the month and is not disclosed with the preliminary estimates.