India: Exports and imports tumble in June
Merchandise exports decreased 9.7% in June compared to the same month a year earlier, contrasting the 3.9% increase in May, seemingly due to fewer exports from labor-intensive manufacturing sectors such as textiles, and gems and jewelry. Merchandise imports, meanwhile, fell 9.1% in June, contrasting May’s 4.3% rise and on reduced imports of gems and jewelry, and energy.
The merchandise trade deficit narrowed to USD 15.3 billion in June from USD 16.6 billion in the same month a year earlier and USD 15.4 billion in May. Meanwhile, the 12-month trailing sum of the trade deficit narrowed to USD 177.5 billion in June, down from USD 178.8 billion in May.
In other trade news, on 5 July, the government raised import tariffs on 75 different goods from around the world, including gold and automobile parts, as part of its finalized 2019 fiscal year budget. This followed the government’s 14 June increase of import duties on 28 goods from the U.S. in a move seen by analysts as retaliation to the U.S. government’s decision on 31 May to revoke India’s GSP trade designation.