A sharp dip in import of gold and silver in June brought down the trade deficit $12.2 billion even as exports registered a decline of 4.56 per cent during the month.
Gold and silver imports dipped to $2.45 billion in June from $8.4 billion in the previous month. However, when compared to the same month in last fiscal, imports grew by 22.8 per cent.
In May, the trade deficit had widened to a record seven-month high of $20.1 billion. “The decline in gold and silver imports can be attributable to the steps taken by the government, especially by the Reserve Bank of India, in May and June. It is mainly due to that impact that lower imports of gold took place in June,’’ Director-General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) Anup Pujari told reporters here.
In fact, imports declined marginally by 0.37 per cent to $36 billion during the month. Exports stood at $23.79 billion against $24.9 billion in June, 2012.
Oil imports during the month grew by 13.74 per cent to $12.76 billion ($11.22 billion). Non-oil imports declined by 6.7 per cent to $23.2 billion.
Petroleum exports too grew by 4.42 per cent to $4.34 billion from $4.15 billion in June, 2012.
During April-June, exports were down by 1.41 per cent at $72.45 billion. However, imports during the same period were up by 5.99 per cent at $122.6 billion. The trade deficit touched $50.18 billion during the quarter.
Federation of Indian Export Organisations President Rafeeque Ahmed said there was need to make manufacturing competitive to support exports, and address the rising trade deficit.
“ Augmenting manufacturing is the need of the hour to address rising trade deficit,’’ he added.