Cargo containers await transport at the Port of Oakland on in Oakland, California, U.S. (Photographer: Noah Berger/Bloomberg News)

India’s Trade Deficit Soars To Five-Year High In June

India’s trade deficit in June widened the most in five years on the back of a surge in crude oil imports.

The trade deficit – the gap between exports and imports – stood 28 percent higher over a year ago period at $16.6 billion, according to data released by the Ministry of Commerce. That was led by a 56.6 percent surge in imports of petroleum products, the data showed. India imports about two-third of its oil needs.

Inbound shipments grew 21.3 percent from last year in June to $44.3 billion. Crude and petroleum products continued to inflate the import bill, followed by higher incoming shipments of machinery, coal. Imports of pearls and precious stones, however, declined last month.

Import Highlights:

  • Gold imports declined 2.8 percent year-on-year to $2.3 billion.
  • Oil imports increased 56.6 percent to $12.7 billion from last year.
  • Import of pearls, precious and semi-precious stones fell 17.1 percent to $2.7 billion.
  • Coal, coke and briquette imports rose 26.9 percent to $2.2 billion.
  • Imports of machinery, both electrical and non-electrical, rose 32.8 percent to $3.2 billion.

Exports rose 17.6 percent to $27.7 billion as India continued to ship more petroleum products, engineering goods, organic and inorganic chemicals.

Export Highlights:

  • Petroleum products’ exports grew 52.5 percent to $4.1 billion.
  • Exports of organic and inorganic chemicals advanced 30.3 percent to $1.7 billion.
  • Engineering goods’ exports grew 14.2 percent to $6.7 billion.
  • Drugs and pharmaceuticals’ exports grew 14.7 percent to $1.5 billion.
  • Exports of readymade garments fell 12.3 percent to $1.3 billion.
  • Gems and jewellery exports’ increased 2.7 percent to $3.5 billion.
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