Oct. shipments dip 5.4%, imports slide 11.5%; ‘data reflects weak demand overseas and in India’
India’s merchandise exports slid again into contraction mode in October as struggling world commerce continued to face headwinds from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Outbound shipments declined 5.4% from a yr earlier to $24.82 billion, after a short respite in September when exports had expanded 6% to snap a six-month-long contraction.
Imports of products additionally declined by 11.5% final month, as per preliminary commerce information launched by the Commerce and Industry Ministry on Tuesday, taking the general imports between April to October to $182.29 billion, 36.3% decrease than the identical interval in 2019.
Merchandise exports within the first seven months of the present monetary yr amounted to $150.07 billion, a 19.1% contraction from the year-earlier interval.
“The trade data shows the recovery is uneven and fragile as exports declined both sequentially and year-on-year, pointing to a sluggish global recovery,” stated Devendra Kumar Pant, chief economist at India Ratings and Research. “The continuous decline in non-oil, non-gold imports are pointing towards very weak domestic demand,” he added.
Gems sector flounders
Exports of rice (112%), chemical substances (73.9%) and medicines and prescribed drugs (21.8%) recorded the best progress in October, whereas transport gear and petroleum merchandise noticed the sharpest declines of (–56.3%) and (-53.3%), respectively.
Among employment-intensive sectors, gems and jewelry and leather-based additionally reported contractions of (-21.3%) and (-3.8%), respectively, whereas export of carpets jumped virtually 38% and handicrafts grew by greater than 11.3%.
Calling for a deeper evaluation of the explanations behind the decline in exports of main export commodities over latest months, the Federation of Indian Exporters’ Organisations (FIEO) known as for “urgent and immediate” motion to resolve key points that led to October’s ‘nominal’ dip. FIEO listed a scarcity of containers and a rise in sea freight expenses as points needing consideration.
FIEO president Sharad Kumar Saraf additionally attributed a part of the decline to farmers’ agitations in some States.
Urging the federal government to launch merchandise export incentives resulting from companies, Mr. Saraf stated exporters had been seeing an increase in orders and an extra fillip was anticipated as soon as the U.S. election course of concludes.