Exports fall 9% in November, imports decline 13.33%

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on December 03, 2020 Published on December 03, 2020

Exporters seek easier refund of GST, raw material at reasonable prices

India’s exports of goods in November 2020 fell 9.07 per cent to $23.43 billion (year-on-year) primarily due to a decline in sectors such as petroleum, leather, engineering products, marine products and chemicals.

Decline in import in November 2020 was higher at 13.33 per cent to $33.39 with trade deficit shrinking to $9.96 billion, which was 21.9 per cent lower than November 2019, as per latest official data released by the Commerce & Industry Ministry. The figure will be revised later in the month.

The fall in goods exports was marginal in the month if one excluded petroleum and gems & jewellery, according to a press statement. "Value of non-petroleum and non-gems and jewellery exports in November 2020 was $19.26 billion, as compared to $19.37 billion in November 2019, a negative growth of 0.59 per cent," the release pointed out.

Similarly, non-oil, non-GJ (gold, silver & precious metals) imports were down by a lower 0.84 per cent at $22.25 billion in November 2020 as compared to the same month last fiscal.

Exporters said that they continued to battle the Covid-19 impact on global trade and were hoping that the government would do everything possible to smoothen operations for them. "Under these circumstances, some of the doable things like easy refund of GST and ensuring availability of raw material at reasonable prices can provide much-needed relief to exporters," pointed out Mahesh Desai, Chairman, Engineering Export Promotion Council of India.

On a more postive note, FIEO President S K Saraf said the forecast of the arrival of the Covid-19 pandemic vaccine along with gradual lifting of lockdown across the country and the globe had helped in boosting business sentiments for the sector as a whole, which can be expected to be seen from the positive figures of the upcoming months. "Going by this trend, we expect to end the financial year 2020-21 with an overall merchandise export of about $290  billion," he said.

Exports during April-November 2020-21 were 17.84 per cent lower at $173.49 billion. In fact, in the eight months of the fiscal so far, September 2020 was the only month when exports posted a small increase over the comparable month of previous fiscal.

Imports during April-November 2020-21 were 33.56 per cent lower at $215.67 billion.

Top five commodity groups of export which have recorded positive growth during November 2020 compared to November 2019 are cereals (164.67 per cent), oil meals (70.54 per cent), iron ore (68.15 per cent), rice (24.41 per cent), ceramic products and glassware (20.98 per cent).

Top five commodity groups of import showing a fall in November this year compared to November 2019 are silver (-89.71 per cent), cotton raw and waste (-74.09 per cent), newsprint (-69.96 per cent), project goods (-53.01 per cent), leather & leather products(-46.81 per cent).

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Published on December 03, 2020
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