India: Export growth picks up in January, imports steady
Merchandise export growth in annual terms accelerated to 3.7% in January from 0.3% in December. The expansion was underpinned by increased exports of chemicals, pharmaceutical products and ready-made garments. Merchandise import growth, meanwhile, was flat in January, which represents an improvement compared to the 2.4% decrease in December. Continued weakness in imports in January was partly due to lower oil imports.
The merchandise trade deficit was USD 14.7 billion in January, larger than the USD 15.7 billion shortfall in the same month a year earlier and the USD 13.1 billion deficit in the previous month. The 12-month trailing sum of the trade deficit fell for the second consecutive month to USD 181.6 billion in January, down from USD 182.6 billion in December.