Exports jump 17% to $24.5 billion in February; trade deficit widens

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NEW DELHI: Recording positive growth for six months in a row, India’s exports soared 17.48 per cent to USD 24.5 billion in February led by petroleum, engineering and chemicals.

The trade deficit widened as well to USD 8.89 billion as imports expanded.

“In continuation with the revival exhibited by exports since September 2016, exports during February for the first time exhibited a double digit positive growth,” the commerce ministry said in a statement.

Imports were up 21.76 per cent to USD 33.38 billion, leaving a trade deficit of USD 8.89 billion as against USD 6.57 billion in February last year.

During the April-February period of the current fiscal, exports have grow by 2.52 per cent to USD 245.4 billion. Imports however dipped 3.67 per cent to USD 340.7 billion.

Trade deficit during the 11-month period stood at USD 95.28 billion as against USD 114.3 billion in the same period of last fiscal.

Oil imports grew by 60 per cent to USD 7.68 billion in February. Non-oil imports too increased by 13.65 per cent to USD 25.7 billion.

Gold imports too jumped manifold to USD 3.48 billion in February as against USD 1.4 billion in the same month last fiscal.