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Commerce Ministry calls meeting of export promotion councils amid negative growth

The commerce ministry is exploring avenues to help contain the reduction in export growth. Owing to the economic slowdown, exports hit negative numbers in October and have not improved in the following month, leading to concerns about exports not ...

PTI|
Oct 18, 2019, 05.47 PM IST
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NEW DELHI: The commerce ministry has called a meeting of all export promotion councils on October 24, amid dip in outbound shipments, an official said. Exports contracted for the consecutive second month in September.

The meeting will be chaired by commerce secretary Anup Wadhawan.

The councils will suggest ways to contain fall in exports.

India's exports remained in the negative zone for the second consecutive month in September, contracting by 6.57 per cent to USD 26 billion mainly on account of significant dip in shipments of petroleum, engineering, gems & jewellery and leather products.

Imports too declined by 13.85 per cent to USD 36.89 billion in September, narrowing the trade deficit to a seven-month low of USD 10.86 billion, according to the government data.

Out of the 30 key sectors, as many as 22 segments showed negative growth in exports in September.

Shipments of gems and jewellery, engineering goods, and petroleum products contracted by 5.56 per cent, 6.2 per cent and 18.6 per cent, respectively.

The country's outbound shipments have remained subdued so far this year. It may have a bearing on the overall economic growth, which fell to over six-year low of 5 per cent in the first quarter of the current fiscal.

Industrial output declined by 1.1 per cent in August due to poor performance by manufacturing, power generation and mining sectors.

Ludhiana-based exporter S C Ralhan has called for immediate release of foreign trade policy by the government to arrest the downfall.

"Government should immediately announce foreign trade policy. If it will be delayed, the government would not be able to control the damage," Ralhan has said.

Trade Promotion Council of India Chairman Mohit Singla said there is a definite sign of manufacturing slowing down owing to the sluggish market demand, which has taken a hit at export.
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