Nov trade deficit narrows on falling gold, oil imports

NEW DELHI Wed Dec 11, 2013 3:49pm IST

Fishermen sit in a trawler navigating past containers stalked on a ship at a port in Vallarpadam in Kochi December 11, 2013. REUTERS/Sivaram V

Fishermen sit in a trawler navigating past containers stalked on a ship at a port in Vallarpadam in Kochi December 11, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Sivaram V

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NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India's trade deficit narrowed in November as exports rose, while imports hit the lowest level in more than two-and-a-half years after gold shipments from overseas fell sharply, according to the trade ministry on Wednesday.

Last month's deficit stood at $9.22 billion, the trade ministry said, compared with $10.56 billion in October - a traditional gold buying season. The deficit had previously narrowed to a two-and-a-half-year low in September.

Merchandise exports rose by 5.86 percent year-on-year in November to $24.6 billion.

Imports fell by 16.37 percent year-on-year to $33.83 billion. Gold and silver imports slumped 80.49 percent to $1.05 billion in November compared to a year earlier.

Gold purchases have been hit this year after India took steps to curb imports of the yellow metal, including imposing a record 10 percent import duty and requiring that 20 percent of imports be re-exported.

(Reporting By Shyamantha Asokan; Editing by Rafael Nam)

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