The country’s exports grew 34.8 per cent in February, recording a positive growth for the fourth successive month and triggering hopes that the worst might be over for embattled traders.
The government also announced incentives worth Rs 625 crore for exporters of garments, engineering, electronics and agro products as the demand for these items in the western economies is yet to pick up.
Overseas shipments touched $16.09 billion in February against $11.9 billion in the same month last year, director general of foreign trade R.S. Gujral said. Shrinking world demand had affected India’s handicrafts, gems and jewellery, leather and textile exports severely in the last one year.
The downturn in exports started in mid-2008 when retail orders from the European Union and the United States crumbled due to the most crushing economic meltdown worldwide causing widespread unemployment and changing consumer-spending behaviour.
The cumulative shipments during the April-February period, however, fell by 11 per cent to $153 billion as compared to $172 billion in the same period last fiscal.
Imports rose 66.1 per cent to $25.06 billion in February against $15.08 billion last year.