After a long decline, exports seem to have turned the corner, growing 4.62 per cent in dollar terms (and 5.45 per cent higher in rupee terms) during September. In the previous 21 months, save one, they had been falling.
Exports stood at $22.88 billion (Rs 152,699.59 crore) in September against $21.86 billion (Rs 144,814.06 crore) during September 2015, according to an official release.
The cumulative value of exports for the period April-September 2016-17 was $131.40 billion (Rs 879,475.63 crore) as against $133.72 billion (Rs 858,622.52 crore) registering a negative growth of 1.74 per cent in dollar terms and positive growth of 2.43 per cent in rupee terms over the same period last year.
Non-petroleum exports in September are valued at $20.33 billion against $19.28 billion in September 2015, an increase of 5.44 per cent. Non-petroleum exports during April-September 2016 are valued at $117.31 billion as compared to $116.77 billion for the corresponding period in 2015, an increase of 0.47 per cent.
The growth in exports has fallen for USA (-6.42 per cent), EU (-8.39 per cent), China (-4.36 per cent) but Japan exhibited positive growth (1.92 per cent) for July 2016 over the corresponding period of previous year.
Imports, however, fell during September by 2.54 per cent in dollar terms to $31.22 billion (Rs 208,356.00 crore) and 1.78 per cent in rupee terms from $32.03 billion (Rs 212,130.85) in September 2015. Cumulative value of imports for April-September 2016 was $174.41 billion (Rs 1,167,458.25 crore) as against $202.27 billion (Rs 1,298,646.11 crore) registering a negative growth of 13.77 per cent in dollar terms and 10.1 per cent in rupee terms over the same period last year.
Oil imports during September 2016 were valued at $6.89 billion which was 3.13 per cent higher than oil imports valued at $6.68 billion in the corresponding period last year. However, oil imports during April-September 2016 were valued at $39.3 billion which was 18.59 per cent lower than the oil imports of $48.27 billion in the corresponding period last year.
Non-oil imports during September were estimated at $24.33 billion which was 4.04 per cent lower than non-oil imports of $25.35 billion in September 2015. Non-oil imports during April-September 2016 were valued at $135.1 billion which was 12.26 per cent lower than the level of such imports valued at $153.99 billion in April-September 2015.
As per the RBI press release, exports in trade in services during August were valued at $13.38 billion (Rs 89,571.88 crore), registering a positive growth of 4.74 per cent in dollar terms as compared to a negative growth of 4.11 per cent during July.
Imports in the same category during August were valued at $8.054 billion (Rs 53,913.15 crore) registering a positive growth of 8.71 per cent in dollar terms as compared to a negative growth of 11.68 per cent during July.
The trade deficit in merchandise for April-September 2016 was estimated at $43 billion which was 37.26 per cent lower than the deficit of $68.54 billion during April-September 2015.
The trade balance in services (i.e. net export of services) for August was estimated at $5.327 billion. The net export of services for April-August 2016 was estimated at $26.9 billion which is lower than net export of services of $28.2 billion during April-August 2015.
The overall the trade balance has improved. Taking merchandise and services together, overall trade deficit for April-September 2016-17 is estimated at $16.1 billion which is 60.07 percent lower in dollar terms than the level of $40.37 billion during April-September 2015.