December trade deficit widens as gold imports skyrockets 72% to $3.39 billion

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Updated: January 15, 2018 7:22:30 PM

The trade deficit in the month of December widened to $14.88 billions as compared to $10.55 billion during the same period last year after gold imports skyrocketed 72% to $3.39 billion year-on-year.

December trade deficit widens as gold imports skyrockets 72% to $3.39 billion.

The trade deficit in the month of December widened to $14.88 billions as compared to $10.55 billion during the same period last year after gold imports skyrocketed 72% to $3.39 billion year-on-year. Besides, both exports and imports also rose in the month of December. Exports in the month of December was recorded $27 billion, up 12% year-on-year and imports was recorded $41.9 billion, up 21.1% year-on-year.

Oil imports also showed a steep rise, up nearly 35% year-on-year to $10.35 billion. Oil imports last month was recorded at $9.55 billion. Merchandise exports for December rose 12.36 percent from a year ago to $27.03 billion.
Goods imports last month were $41.91 billion, a gain of 21.12 percent from a year ago, data from the commerce and industry ministry showed.

Exports of engineering goods as well as petroleum products showed an increase of over 25 per cent in December. However, shipments of ready-made garments declined by 8 per cent to USD 1.33 billion last month. Gold imports surged by 71.5 per cent to USD 3.39 billion last month as against USD 1.97 billion in December 2016. The imports of petroleum products and crude oil increased by a significant 35 per cent to USD 10.34 billion in December, from USD 7.66 billion a year ago.

The ministry said the global Brent prices increased by 18.75 per cent last month, compared to December 2016 as per
World Bank commodity price data. Cumulative value of exports for the period April-December, 2017-18, was USD 223.512 billion as against USD 199.467 billion in the year-ago period, registering a growth of 12.05 per cent.

The imports during first nine months of the current fiscal amounted to USD 338.369 billion as against USD 277.89
billion, a growth of of 21.76 per cent. The trade deficit during the period widened to USD 114.85 billion. Meanwhile, the Reserve Bank data showed that the exports in services in November 2017 were valued at USD 15.392 billion. The imports were valued at USD 9.64 billion. It said in a press release that the trade balance in services (net export of services) for the month was estimated at USD 5.74 billion.

(With PTI Inputs)

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