NEW DELHI: India continued to chip away at its mammoth trade deficit with China, government data showed on Thursday, with the number falling from over $53 billion in fiscal year 2018-19 to $48.66 billion in 2019-20. The reduction in trade deficit has primarily been driven by a fall in India’s imports from the northern neighbour, even as India’s exports to the country managed to hold their levels.
Data shows that imports from China fell by a substantial 7.19 per cent during 2019-20 while exports to China shrank only marginally, at 0.86 per cent. Exports to China have fallen from $16.75 in 2018-19 to $16.6 billion in FY20, while imports fell from $70.32 in FY19 to just $65.26 billion in FY20.
India’s trade deficit with the country had ballooned in the first few years of the previous decade—reaching a peak of $63 billion in FY18 from just $4.1 billion in FY06—as consumption exploded in the Indian market. However, the past three years have seen Chinese imports, and consequently the trade deficit, fall steadily. From the peak in FY18, trade deficit has fallen to $53.6 billion in FY19 and $48.66 billion in FY20.
Over this period, the Centre has taken steps to reduce import dependence in several segments and imposed a series of anti-dumping duties to protect local manufacturing. China accounts for about 14 per cent of India’s imports and is a major supplier for sectors like mobile phones, telecom, power, plastic toys, and critical pharma ingredients.151.56 million). Over 50 quality control orders (QCOs) and other technical regulations have been notified in the past one year including on electronic goods, toys, air conditioners, bicycle parts, chemicals, safety glass, pressure cooker, items of steel, electrical items, etc.