New Delhi: As India surpassed its merchandise export target of $400 billion set for FY2022, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Wednesday hailed the achievement, calling it “a key milestone” in the country’s “Aatmanirbhar Bharat journey”.
The target was achieved with 10 days to spare — exports crossed $400.8 billion on March 21 and there’s a likelihood that total exports for the fiscal may cross $410 billion by the end of the month.
While topping $400 billion, exports have registered a 37 percent increase compared to $292 billion in the previous fiscal and 21 percent over the previous record high of exports of $330 billion set in FY2019, prior to the pandemic.
India’s imports during the period have also surged to a record high level of over $589 billion during the fiscal, taking India’s trade deficit to a record $188.2 billion.
In a Twitter post, Modi said: “India set an ambitious target of USD 400 billion of goods exports and achieved this target for the first time ever. I congratulate our farmers, weavers, MSMEs, manufacturers, exporters for this success. This is a key milestone in our Aatmanirbhar Bharat journey.”
Officials said a preliminary analysis showed that while commodity price hike had contributed to the rise in exports, many goods including auto components, motor vehicles, cereal preparations, buffalo meat, rice, carpets, processed fruits, and juice also saw increases in overall export volumes despite stagnant or declining commodity prices.
Experts noted that another key factor driving the surge in exports is the pent-up global demand that was unmet during the major waves of the Covid-19 pandemic. Expansionary monetary policy by developed economies in response to the economic impact of the pandemic has also boosted demand for Indian exports.