The slump in exports is mainly due to global slowdown, dip in crude oil prices and rupee appreciation. In May 2014, the country's merchandise exports stood at USD 27.99 billion.

The last time exports registered a positive growth was in November last year when it expanded 7.27 percent. The main exporting sectors, including petroleum products, gems and jewellery, engineering and chemicals reported a negative growth in April.

Imports, too, declined 16.52 percent to USD 32.75 billion. Trade deficit narrowed to USD 10.4 billion in the month under review compared with USD 11.23 billion in May 2014, according to data released by the Commerce Ministry.

Oil imports dropped 40.97 percent in May to USD 8.53 billion. Non-oil imports too came down by 2.24 percent to USD 24.21 billion.

Gold imports, however, grew 10.47 percent to USD 2.42 billion in May. During April-May 2015, exports fell 17.21 percent to USD 44.4 billion. Imports, too, shrank 12.2 percent to USD 65.8 billion, resulting in a trade deficit of USD 21.39 billion in the first two months of the current fiscal.

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