India's Exports Grow 6.3% In October, Fastest In a Year

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ten data blog16-11-2023

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India's exports of goods rose 6.3% in October, the highest growth rate in nearly a year. However, imports also soared to a record $65 billion, resulting in a trade deficit of $31.4 billion. The commerce minister was optimistic about breaking last year's export figures despite falling commodity prices. The higher trade deficit has raised concerns among policymakers and put pressure on the rupee.Gold imports almost doubled to $7.2 billion in October. Silver shipments rose sharply.


India's merchandise exports rose 6.3% in October, the fastest expansion in nearly a year, while imports soared to a record $65 billion, up 12.3%.


As a result, the trade deficit hit a new high of $31.4 billion, surpassing the July 2022 record of $30 billion. This is the second time this year that exports have grown, with revised figures for August projecting a 3.8 % increase.


"Some of the data from the first week of November suggests that the recovery is stabilizing. We hope to surpass last year's figures. This is happening despite the fall in commodity prices," Commerce Minister Sunil Barthwal told reporters.


Commerce Minister Sunil Barthwal, however, declined to give specific figures, saying exports would depend on the commodity price, exchange rate and interest rate environment in developed economies, which have dampened demand.


Last fiscal year, India's merchandise exports are estimated to have reached a record $451 billion, despite a downturn in the second half of the year I - an aspect that is expected to help in the rest of the fiscal year as the base effect plays out. However, if this trend continues, a rising trade deficit would be a concern for policymakers as it would put pressure on the rupee if the global economic environment deteriorates or geopolitical tensions escalate.


Although the rupee posted its best performance against the dollar in nearly two months on Wednesday, closing at 83.14; on Friday, the rupee touched an all-time low of 83.42.


"We expect the merchandise trade deficit to widen to $22.8 billion by October 2023 given the change in the holiday calendar. The higher-than-expected merchandise trade deficit was driven by gold, oil, and balancing imports, where exports were broadly in line with our forecast. Given the higher number of vacations, both non-oil imports and exports should slow in November. We expect a trade deficit of $2.2-25 billion for the month," said Aditi Nayar, chief economist at ICRA.


Gold imports are estimated to have almost doubled to $7.2 billion in October, compared with $3.7 billion a year ago.Silver shipments jumped 125% to $1.8 billion in October.




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