New Delhi, Oct 2 | India’s merchandise exports in September rose by 5.27 per cent on a year-on-year basis, official data showed on Friday.
The country shipped out merchandise worth $27.40 billion as compared to merchandise worth $26.02 billion exported during the like period of the previous year.
According to the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, the top five commodities that showed positive growth during September 2020 vis-a-vis September 2019 were other cereals, iron ore, rice, oilmeal and carpets.
On Thursday, Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal had tweeted: “Make in India, Make for the World: Indian merchandise exports grow 5.27 per cent in Sep 20 as compared to last year. Another indicator of the rapid recovery of Indian economy as it surpasses pre-COVID levels across parameters.”
In terms of sequential movement, India’s merchandise exports in August stood at $22.70 billion as against $25.99 billion exported during the like period of the previous year.
However, exports during April-September 2020-21 were $125.06 billion, exhibiting a negative growth of 21.43 per cent over the same period last year.
Similarly, India’s imports declined, falling 19.60 per cent to $30.31 billion in September from $37.69 billion reported for the corresponding month of 2019.
“Merchandise imports during April-September 2020-21 were $148.69 billion, as compared to $248.08 billion during the same period last year, exhibiting a negative growth of 40.06 per cent,” the ministry said in a statement.
“India is thus a net importer in September 2020, with a trade deficit of $2.91 billion, as compared to a trade deficit of $11.67 billion, showing a substantial improvement of 75.06 per cent,” the ministry said.
Commenting on the data, EEPC India Chairman Mahesh Desai said: “While the reversal in trend for merchandise exports turning into positive territory in September 2020 is a matter of relief, the challenges in external trade would continue, given the present state of global health emergency and its economic impact on the major economies.
“The engineering exports too have shown a positive trend of 3.73 per cent in September, although the major turnaround has come about thanks to a sharp increase in pharma exports for understandable reasons.”
Reacting to the September 2020 export figures, FIEO President Sharad Kumar Saraf said that anti-China sentiments across the globe has also been one of the reasons for the improved performance in exports.
Saraf added that exporters have started receiving a lot of enquiries and orders from across the globe, helping many sectors to further show improved export performance, which is likely to get better and better in next few months.
According to ICRA Principal Economist Aditi Nayar: “The YoY growth in merchandise exports in September 2020 is heartening, after the faltering trend seen in the previous month.
“Regardless, the sharp gap in non-oil, non-gold merchandise imports on a YoY basis remains a cause for concern with regard to the strength of domestic demand.”
TPCI Chairman Mohit Singla said: “Export is on the path of recovery as the international market is opening up and buyers have started placing orders. Food and agri sectors will continue to thrust exports as they have done even at the worst of times in the past.”