India Trade Deficit Narrowed in September as Import Demand Flagged

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By Joshua Kirby

India’s trade deficit narrowed on year in September as imports continued to fall at a faster rate than exports, suggesting weakening domestic demand in the South Asian nation.

The deficit in trade goods, measuring the difference between exports and imports, stood at $19.37 billion, down from $27.98 billion a year earlier, government data showed Friday.

Exports were slightly lower on year, but imports fell more sharply, decreasing 15% to a total $53.84 billion. Twenty out of 30 key sectors booked lower imports, including fertilisers, transport equipment, coal and petroleum.

Lower demand for foreign goods tallies with easing inflation in India. Prices rose by 5.0% in September, decelerating from the previous month and falling in line with the range targeted by the Reserve Bank of India. Easing inflation was eased by key areas including fuel prices, which were lower than the same month last year.

Write to Joshua Kirby at [email protected]; @joshualeokirby

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