New Delhi, Sept. 9: After being way off the market last fiscal, the export target for 2013-14 looks attainable because of the falling rupee.
“We are confident of meeting the export target this fiscal as the depreciation in the rupee has made the goods competitive,” a senior commerce ministry official said.
The government has set an export target of $325 billion for 2013-14.
In 2012-13, exports fell for the first time in three years by 1.8 per cent to $300.6 billion on account of the slowdown in developed countries such as the US and Europe, resulting in a massive trade deficit of $191 billion. The government had set a target of $360 billion for 2012-13.
“In July, we have seen the amount of import containment. In August also, we expect the same to happen. This trend of import containment will continue,” the official said.
Exports rose 11.64 per cent in July from a year earlier, while imports fell even as the trade deficit remained almost unchanged.
At $25.83 billion, July exports were the highest since March, while imports fell 6.2 per cent to $38.1 billion from a year ago. Despite the positive trends, the trade deficit of $12.27 billion in July was almost the same as in June.
Officials said the engineering sector was a concern. “We must lower the manufacturing/engineering trade deficit. This can be done only by promoting the production of capital goods sector in the country,” EEPC India chairman Aman Chadha said.
He said one of the ways to curtail the import of engineering items was to immediately launch a technical upgradation scheme.
Steps are likely to be announced soon to contain non-essential imports in a bid to narrow the trade deficit. The government has already banned the duty-free import of flat-screen televisions.