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Exports cross $ 300 bn target

India's exports surpassed the target of $300 billion for 2011-12 despite problems in Europe and the US that led to decline in shipments by 5.71% in March and spurt in trade deficit to an all time high of $185 billion in the last fiscal.

business Updated: May 01, 2012 14:29 IST

India's exports surpassed the target of $300 billion for 2011-12 despite problems in Europe and the US that led to decline in shipments by 5.71% in March and spurt in trade deficit to an all time high of $185 billion in the last fiscal.

Exports touched $303.7 billion for the previous fiscal, registering 21% expansion. Exports in March declined to $28.68 billion from $30.41 in March 2011.

Imports for the month aggregated $42.6 billion leaving a trade gap of $13.9 billion, according to the data released by the commerce ministry on Tuesday.

Import bill in 2011-12 touched $488.6 billion on account of rise in imports of crude oil and gold. Both items alone accounted for over 44% of the total import bill.

Commerce secretary Rahul Khullar had said the trade deficit situation can worsen in the current fiscal.

"If balance of trade (BoT) is to stay exactly where it was, my exports need to grow by 28% and that is impossible,we cannot do that...where are we going to drum up 25-30% growth,"? he had asked.

The highest ever BoT remains an area of concern for the Reserve Bank and the exporters community - FIEO. "The financing of the current account deficit will continue to pose a major challenge," RBI has said in its credit policy.

While gold and silver imports grew by 44.4% year - on-year to $61.5 billion, crude oil imports went up by 46.9% to $155.6 billion in 2011-12.

Oil and non-oil imports during the month increased by 32.45% and 19.91% to $15.83 billion and $26.75 billion respectively.

FIEO said the deficit could be bridged with increasing exports as market and product diversification strategy has started yielding results.