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NEW DELHI, IMPORTS, TRADE DEFICIT : India’s merchandise exports surged 39% to $37.8 billion in December from $27.22 billion in the year-earlier, government data said. Imports also rose by 39% to $59.48 billion.

India’s overall exports (merchandise and services combined) in December are estimated to be $57.87 billion, a 25% growth from a year earlier and 23% over the pre-pandemic month of December 2019, the government said in a statement on Thursday.

It added that overall imports in December were estimated to be $72.35 billion, an increase of 34% from a year earlier and a 40% rise from December 2019.

The trade deficit widened to $21.68 billion in December from $15.72 billion in the same month last year.

Experts cautioned that with the trade gap widening to more than $20 billion, the current account deficit could also widen to $25-30 billion in the third quarter, exceeding the full-year deficit seen in FY2020.

According to government data, trade excluding petroleum and gems and jewellery exports in December was $28.92 billion, registering a 30% growth from a year earlier and a growth of 37% from December 2019.

Imports of the same goods were at $35.47 billion in December, a 34%increase from a year earlier and a 47% rise from December 2019.

According to a PTI report, the country’s exports grew 33.16% to $7.63 billion during January 1-7 period on account of healthy performance by various sectors, including engineering, petroleum and gems and jewellery, according to preliminary data from the commerce ministry.

Exports stood at $5.73 billion during the same period last year.

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