A faster rise in imports at $47.09 billion, driven by gold, left a wider trade deficit of $13.81 billion compared to $8.2 billion a year ago. Imports during the month increased by 51.72 per cent.
Gold imports rose 82.48 per cent on-year last month to a five-month high of $6.75 billion. Oil imports at $11.65 billion, were up 80.64 per cent on-year.
“The buoyancy in exports continues in the month of August with resilient demand in India’s major export markets,” said Prahalathan Iyer, Chief General Manager, Research & Analysis, India Exim Bank.
In the April-August period, outbound shipments were $164.2 billion.
“As the state-wise restrictions have lifted, and economic activity and mobility have recovered, the merchandise trade deficit has widened steadily,” said Aditi Nayar, chief economist at ICRA.
As per the estimates by India Exim Bank, exports from India in the quarter ending September 2021 is estimated to be $98 billion, taking India’s first half exports to around $193-195 billion, closer to the proportionate target of $200 billion set by the government.
Among imports, project goods, silver, transport equipment and newsprint witnessed a decline.
Non-oil, non-gold, silver and precious metals imports were $28.67 billion in August, up 37 per cent and indicating strong domestic demand.