India has trade deficit with 48 countries: Sharma
New Delhi: India has been running a trade deficit with 48 countries including China, Australia and Iran during the last three years, Parliament was informed Monday.
"India has a trade deficit with 48 countries both during last three years as well as during 2012-13 (April-September). Out of these the names of top 10 countries are China, Switzerland, Saudi Arabia, Australia, Nigeria, Kuwait, Iran, Iraq, Korea and Qatar," Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma said in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.
He said that the combined share of these 10 countries to the total exports during April-September period of this fiscal is 13.5 percent.
During the first six months of the financial year, the country's exports dipped by 6.79 percent to USD 143.6 billion from USD 154.1 billion in the same period last year.
India had the highest trade deficit of about USD 40 billion with China in 2011-12.
Declining exports and increasing imports have pushed the country's trade gap to a record high of USD 21 billion in October.
Sharma also said the country had favourable balance of trade with 105 countries during the last three years. These include top 10 nations such as the US, Netherlands, Singapore and UK.
"The combined share of these 10 countries to the total exports during April-September period of this fiscal is 35 percent," he added.
In reply to another query, Sharma, who is also holding additional charge of Textile Ministry, said Cotton Yarn Advisory Board has estimated the yarn production at 3,500 million kg for 2012-13 against consumption of 2,670 million kg with an exportable surplus of 920 million kg and a closing stock of 90 million kg.
Further, he said there is no reported dip in demand of cotton apparels due to change in fashion preference of middle class consumer.
On a query on NTC, he said 78 unviable sick mills of the National Textile Corporation have been closed till date.
Out of 23 working units, 15 have generated cash profit for the period April-September 2012.