EU, China slowdown, price slump cause of exports fall: Nirmala Sitharaman
India`s exports have been in decline for over a year owing to factors like stagnation in the European Union (EU), the Chinese slowdown and fall in commodity and crude oil prices, parliament was informed on Tuesday.
"EU countries that account for nearly 16% of India`s exports, are facing stagnation. China is also experiencing a slowdown. The recovery in the US has been moderate and uncertain in terms of sustainability," Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman told the Lok Sabha in a written reply.
"Some increase in trade barriers has also been reported," she said, adding there is a general slowdown in the world GDP growth, which is affecting the growth of world trade.
The minister said fall in crude oil prices has resulted in a decline in petroleum products` prices as well as export realisations, which are major items of export for India. The country`s exports declined for the 16th straight month in March, contracting by 5.47% to $22.71 billion.
In reply to another question, Sitharaman said that total exports from the special economic zones (SEZs) during the period April-December 2015 were worth Rs. 3,41,684.75 crore. SEZs in Gujarat witnessed highest exports during the period stood at Rs.1,06,569 crore, followed by Tamil Nadu (Rs.55,479 crore) and Maharashtra (Rs.51,777 crore).