India’s exports rose for the first time in 14 months as recovery in the global economy boosted year-end holiday demand for the South Asian nation’s products.
Overseas shipments increased 18.2 percent to US$13.2 billion in November from a year earlier after sliding an average 21 percent per month since October 2008, according to a trade ministry statement. Imports fell 2.6 percent to US$22.8 billion in November, resulting in the trade deficit narrowing to US$9.6 billion from US$12.3 billion a year ago.
A return to export growth may boost production at companies in India and bolster the revival in Asia’s third-biggest economy, which expanded 7.9 percent in the three months to Sept. 30 from a year earlier, the quickest pace in six quarters.
Some sectors have started showing signs of improvement. Overseas sales of Indian gems and jewelry jumped 54.8 percent to US$21.4 billion in November compared with US$13.8 billion in the same month a year ago, according to the Gem & Jewelry Export Promotion Council. Vehicle exports rose 25 percent in November from a year earlier, the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers said on Dec. 8.
The Indian currency strengthened 4.8 percent last year to 46.5275 per dollar at the 5pm close in Mumbai on Thursday, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That was the third-best performance among Asian currencies after Indonesia’s rupiah and the South Korean won.
The rupee gained as foreign funds raised their holdings of the nation’s stocks to a record as the benchmark Sensitive Index rallied the most in 18 years.The Indian stock market was closed yesterday.
Non-oil imports dropped 5.9 percent to US$16.5 billion in November from a year ago, while oil imports rose 7.3 percent to US$6.38 billion in the same month, the government report showed.
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