India’s goods exports in May increased 15.46 per cent to $37.29 billion (year-on-year) driven by petroleum products, electronic goods and readymade garments, according to preliminary trade data released by the Commerce Department on Thursday.

The country’s trade deficit more than trebled to $23.3 billion in May, compared to a trade deficit of $6.53 billion in May 2021, as imports during the month spiked 56.14 per cent to $60.62 billion.

The increase in imports was fuelled by a sharp rise in inflow of petroleum products, gold, electronic goods and coal.

Non-petroleum exports increased 8.13 per cent to $29.18 billion indicating an increase in exports beyond petroleum items.

Value of non-petroleum imports at $42.48 billion was 44.7 per cent higher over the same month last year.

India’s goods export in April-May 2022-23 increased 22.26 per cent to $77.08 billion while imports in the first two months increased 42.35 per cent to $120.81 billion. Trade deficit for the period doubled to $43.73 billion.

The country’s exports touched a record high of $419.65 billion (growing over 40 per cent) in 2021-22, as the world bounced back from the Covid-19 induced slowdown. The Commerce Department has not yet set an export target for the current fiscal due to an uncertain environment created by the Russian-Ukraine conflict.

“In the short and medium term there are fears of demand slowdown in advanced economies which could potentially dent the ongoing momentum,” said Mahesh Desai, Chairman, EEPC India.

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