The Telegraph
Saturday , May 10 , 2014
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Trade deficit shrinks in April

New Delhi, May 9: Trade deficit shrunk to $10 billion in April on the back of a fall in imports and a surge in exports, easing pressure on the current account deficit and the rupee.

After declining in the previous two months, exports rose 5.26 per cent to $25.63 billion in April, showing signs of a rising in demand in the global markets.

Imports continued to decline and fell 15 per cent to $35.72 billion as manufacturing activities failed to pick up.

The rise in exports and a fall in imports have brought down the trade deficit to $10.08 billion in April from $17.67 billion a year ago.

“The new financial year has started on a positive note and we look forward to build on it. We are aiming for a double-digit growth in exports to keep trade deficits within manageable limit,” Rafeeque Ahmed, president of the Federation of Indian Export Organisations, said.

He said the forecast of a 4.7 per cent increase in global trade in 2014 and 5.3 per cent in 2015 by the WTO augured well for Indian exports, too.

The fall in imports can be attributed to a 21.5 per cent decline in non-oil imports at $22.74 billion during April. Oil imports were valued at $12.97 billion, which was 0.6 per cent lower than April 2013.

The curbs on gold import continued to subdue demand. Imports of the yellow metal fell 74.13 per cent to $1.75 billion in April because of the curbs imposed by the government to contain the current account deficit.

However, the uptick in exports was driven by a 21.25 per cent rise in the shipment of engineering goods at $5.72 billion. Iron ore exports rose 23.4 per cent to $152 million.

Other major export items included leather and ceramic products, the traditional items of shipments to US and Europe.