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India’s Exports Fall Sharply

India’s exports fell at their sharpest pace in over a decade in January as the worsening global downturn crimped demand for products, but the trade gap narrowed as oil imports slumped.

Merchandise exports fell 15.9% from a year earlier in January to $12.3 billion, the commerce ministry said Monday. This marks the worst performance since June 1998 when exports had fallen 16.1% from the previous year.

Imports also shrank 18.2% from a year earlier to $18.4 billion, evidence that India’s once booming economy is cooling after years of frenetic growth.

Oil imports contracted 47.5% from a year earlier in January to $4.5 billion, while non-oil imports fell 0.5% to $13.9 billion.

The trade deficit narrowed to $6.1 billion from $7.6 in December and $7.8 billion a year earlier.

India’s exports have now fallen for four successive months as key trading partners such as the U.S. and Europe slump in to recession.

[ Continue reading original article on The Wall Street Journal ]

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