Trade deficit widened to USD 12.47 billion due to 140 percent rise in gold imports in August from year-ago period. However, the deficit has narrowed as compared to July, when the figure stood at USD 12.81 billion.
    
Imports too declined by 9.95 percent to USD 33.74 billion, according to the Commerce Ministry data. Expressing disappointment over the dip, Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) said softening of prices of key agricultural and industrial inputs, coupled with dip in global demand, is the prime cause for the decline.
    
"The Prime Minister and the Commerce and Industry Minister should intervene in the matter. Immediate consultation with export bodies should be held to draw a roadmap for exports in such challenging time in which reaching last year's exports figure looks difficult," it said in a statement.
    
Last time in March, exports had dipped by 21 percent. Gold imports increased to USD 4.95 billion in the month under review from USD 2.06 billion in August last year.
    
The main sectors which reported decline in exports include petroleum products (47.88 percent), engineering (29 percent), leather (12.78 percent), marine products (20.83 percent) and carpet (22 percent).
    
Also, oil imports dropped 42.59 percent in August to USD 7.35 billion. Oil imports account for about 31 per cent of the total imports. Petroleum product and engineering exports account for 18 percent and about 25 percent, respectively of the country's total exports.

 

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