India’s overall trade deficit during April-November reduced 38.79% from $ 100.38 billion in 2022 to $61.44 billion in 2023. The merchandise trade deficit also declined $189.21 billion in April-November 2022 to $166.35 billion in April-November 2023, the monthly trade data released by the Commerce Ministry shows.

"India's merchandise trade deficit unexpectedly shrunk in November 2023, and a better-than-expected performance of exports resulted in a narrower deficit of $ 20 billion as compared to our projection ($23.5 billion). Over the remainder of this fiscal year, we project the monthly trade deficit in a range of $20-25 billion, resulting in a current account deficit of around 2.5% of GDP in Q3 FY2024 and 1.7% of GDP in Q4 FY2024. Overall, we foresee the CAD in a 1.7-1.8% of GDP range in FY2024." Aditi Nayar, Chief Economist, Head Research and Outreach, ICRA Ltd, says.

India exported $33.9 billion worth of goods in November 2023, marginally lower than $34.89 billion registered in November 2022. Import of merchandise also declined to $54.58 billion in November 2023, as against $56.95 billion the same month last year.

Overall exports (merchandise and services combined) in November 2023 are estimated to be $62.58 billion, exhibiting a positive growth of 1.23 per cent over November 2022. Overall imports for the month were estimated to be $67.88 billion, exhibiting a negative growth of (-) 6.16% over November 2022.

Overall goods and services exports during April-November 2023 stood at $499.46 billion, (-) 1.39% lower than the same period last year. Overall imports in April-November 2023 are estimated to be $560.9 billion, a negative growth of (-) 7.58% over April-November 2022.

Major contributors to export growth in November 2023 were iron ore, gems & jewellery, drugs & pharmaceuticals, fruits & vegetables, meat, dairy & poultry products, mica, coal & other ores, minerals Including processed minerals and cotton yarn, handloom products etc. While electronic goods exports registered a growth of 23.56% at $17.74 billion during April-November 2023 as compared to $14.36 billion in April-November 2022, drugs and pharma exports grew by 8.05% in April-November 2023 at $17.92 billion from $16.59 billion in April-November 2022.

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