India’s merchandise exports in April grew 24.2 per cent year-on-year to their third-highest level ever of $38.2 billion in April, down from $42.22 billion a month back, according to preliminary data released by the commerce ministry on Tuesday.
Imports in April surged 26.6 per cent to $58.3 billion, as against $60.74 billion in March. As such, the merchandise trade deficit widened to $20.01 billion from $18.51 billion during the period.
On a year-on-year basis, the growth in exports and imports remained robust. While exports increased by 24.2 per cent in April compared to the previous year, imports increased by 26.6 per cent.
When compared to April 2021, the trade deficit increased by 31.2 per cent.
Petroleum products (113.21 per cent), electronic goods (64.04 per cent) and chemicals (26.71 per cent) led the way in a high increase in exports during April 2022, the ministry said.
On the other hand, the export of gems and jewellery (-2.1 per cent) and rice (-14.2 per cent) contracted during the month. While engineering goods (15.4%), pharmaceuticals (3.9%), and readymade garments (16.4%) grew at a slower pace,
Coal accounted for 136.4 per cent of the increase in imports, followed by crude oil (81.2 per cent), chemicals (46.7 per cent), vegetable oil (33.6 per cent), and electronic goods (22.8 per cent). Gold imports, on the other hand, fell 73% to $1.69 billion.
Meanwhile, in March, Indian exports crossed the $400 billion mark. India's merchandise exports for the period April-February 2021–2022 stood at $374.81 billion as against $256.55 billion during the April-February 2020–2021, registering a growth of 46.09%.