New Delhi: Demonstrating a robust demand of India merchandises into the global markets, country’s exports on Tuesday registered a growth of 37.5 per cent at USD 246 billion in the fiscal year 2010-11.

This was the first time when country’s foreign imports of USD 350 billion matched the exports at USD 600 billion.

Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma after releasing the trade data said India aims to achieve merchandise exports of USD 450 billion by 2014.

He said the exports for March rose by a handsome 43.9 per cent to USD 29.1 billion compared to the growth in the same month in the previous financial year, adding that similar growth rate is difficult to be expected next year.

Sharma said while the government has not fixed any target for the current fiscal, "... we will continue to strive to increase it and have kept next year export targets at 25 per cent".

Commerce Secretary Rahul Khullar said imports figures may be revised upwards leading to a trade gap increasing to USD 110-115 billion.

“Engineering goods grew 84.7 per cent to USD 60 billion led the show, followed by Petroleum products at USD 42.5 billion (up 50.5 per cent). Gems and jewellery grew 15.4 per cent to USD 33.5 billion, drugs and pharmaceuticals 15 per cent to USD 10.3 billion,” said Khullar.

The Commerce Secretary said while there has been an improvement in demand in the US an even in EU, "my hunch is that export growth (also) came from new markets, particularly from Latin America."

When asked if the growth rate is sustainable, he said it will be a "pipe-dream" given the global economic outlook. However, business houses are looking forward to any amendments in the revised figures but loss through exports is expected to remain static at USD 110 billion.

However, the government feels that the same growth rate would not be possible to achieve in the next fiscal year due to changes in its traditional markets like America, European Union and Japan.

JPN/Bureau