Indias Dec-end external debt at $334.9 billion

Written by fe Bureau | New Delhi | Updated: Mar 31 2012, 09:18am hrs
Indias external debt rose to $334.9 billion at December end 2011, an increase of 9.4% in the first nine months of the current financial year, owing largely to higher commercial borrowings and short-term trade credit, the finance ministry said on Friday.

These two components together contributed 84.7% to the total increase in Indias external debt. The increase in commercial borrowings and short-term trade credits reflected improved access to global financial markets and the need for financing import demand, the report said.

Data released by the Department of Economic Affairs showed that Indias total external debt at the beginning of 2011-12 was $306.1 billion. It increased by $28.8 billion or 9.4% in the first three quarters of the fiscal. The government external debt stood at $81.2 billion, or 24.3% of total external debt.

The proportion of external debt to the countrys gross domestic product (GDP) increased to 20% at December-end 2011 as compared to 17.8% at March-end 2011.

The long-term debt, accounting for 76.7% to Indias total external debt, rose to $256.9 billion at December-end 2011, recording an increase of $15.8 billion or 6.5% over the March-end 2011 level. The short-term which contributes 23.3% to the total external debt, grew by $13.1 billion 20.1% to $78.1 billion during the period under review.

Component-wise, the share of commercial borrowings stood highest at 29.9%, followed by Non-Resident Indian (NRI) deposits 15.7% and multilateral debt 14.9%.