‘Why have exports fallen, Prime Minister?’

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on January 22, 2018

Abhishek Manu Singhvi

Congress asks Modi why numbers have dipped despite his visit to 30 countries since assuming office

The Congress has asked the Narendra Modi government why India’s exports have dwindled despite the Prime Minister visiting 30 countries in the last one-and-a-half years.

Party spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi said here on Wednesday that the country witnessed a “whopping drop of 44.89 per cent” in exports, from $280 billion in May 2014 to $154 billion.

‘Plummeting exports’

Singhvi claimed that under the UPA government, the country’s exports crossed the targeted $300 billion and stood at $315 billion in March 2013. “Even during the first eight months of the current fiscal and all the hoopla created by Modi’s government around ‘Make in India’, our exports plummeted by 17.6 per cent to just $154.29 billion in October. India’s exports have contracted for 11 straight months now,” he said, quoting government figures.

He said gems and jewellery, which account for roughly 13 per cent of the export basket, had fallen 12.8 per cent. “Chemicals and related products which account for 10 per cent of the basket fell by 8.2 per cent while engineering goods with a share of 22.4 per cent have contracted 11.6 per cent,” he said.

“Why is the economy in such a pitiable state? Apart from the sloganeering that the Prime Minister is indulging in in the NRI circuit, what tangible steps has the government taken to push exports? We want to ask PM Modi, what exactly have you been doing on your frequent foreign tours? What is the reason for decrease in exports?” Singhvi asked.

‘Congress can help’

He urged Modi government to take tips from the Congress on running the economy. “We would like to ask the government that if Modi and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley are finding it difficult to handle the economy, the Congress party would like to help them with all its experience, in the larger interest of the country,” he added.

Price rise of staples

He also attacked the Centre on inflation. “Even as the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister fool the people of the country by indulging in the jugglery of WPI, CPI, inflation and deflation, staple daal continues to sell at ₹200 a kg, onion at ₹40 per kg, tomatoes at ₹70-80 per kg, matar at ₹160 per kg and now the basic carbohydrate-rich rice threatens to touch a boiling point,” he said.

Published on November 18, 2015

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