Economy

Exports in Nov seen at $22.3 b, imports at $36 b

Arun S. New Delhi | Updated on March 12, 2018 Published on December 09, 2011

Trade deficit narrows to $13.6 b

India’s exports in November were worth $22.3 billion, while imports for the month were to the tune of $35.9 billion, resulting in a trade deficit of $13.6 billion, according to provisional data released by the Commerce Ministry on Friday.

Releasing the data, the Commerce Secretary, Dr Rahul Khullar, said exports during April-November grew 33.2 per cent year-on-year to $192.7 billion.

Imports between April and November registered a 30.2 per cent growth to $309.5 billion, leaving a trade deficit of $116.8 billion.

Significantly, Dr Khullar said the country is facing a serious balance of trade problem due to the high level of imports, adding that the trade deficit for 2011-12 could be in the range of $155-160 billion.

The Commerce Secretary said it will be difficult for exports to meet the $300 billion target for this fiscal.

Though the trade deficit in November fell to $13.6 billion from the previous month’s $19.6 billion (which was a four-year high), the level is above the Government’s tolerance level, he said.

ERROR IN EXPORT NUMBERS

Dr Khullar admitted that there has been an overestimation of export numbers to the tune of $9 billion during the fiscal so far, leaving a margin of error of 4-5 per cent.

This, he said, was because of mis-classification of data entry regarding some sectors such as engineering, petroleum products and gems and jewellery. Also the computer software that is being used to transfer data (Icegate) had crashed for some time and then was being upgraded later, leading to problems in data entry, he said.

"While there has been an over-estimation of engineering exports by $15 billion, there has been an underestimation of exports of petroleum products and gems and jewellery by $12 billion," Dr Khullar said.

The mistakes in the export numbers have been corrected and the problem is solved now, he said.

However, he added that the import numbers are reliable and therefore there is no change in the import data.

Published on December 09, 2011
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