Trade deficit for fiscal year stands at Rs 811 billion

Image for representation: Trade deficit
Image for representation: Trade deficit

Kathmandu, February 22

The country has experienced a ballooning trade deficit of Rs 811.11 billion while conducting foreign trade worth Rs 984.77 billion in the first seven months of the current fiscal year 2023/24.

According to the foreign trade data of the reporting period, made public by the Department of Customs, imports amounting to around Rs 897.94 billion were made while exports amounted to Rs 86.83 billion were recorded as of mid-February (end of Nepali month Magh).

In comparison to the first seven months of the last fiscal year, imports decreased by 2.31 per cent and exports dropped by 7.07 per cent. According to the Department, the trade deficit has decreased by 1.77 per cent while overall trade dropped by 2.75 per cent compared to the last year.

India is the largest trading country for Nepal. Imports from India amounted to Rs 554.75 billion, while only goods worth Rs 58.72 billion were exported. With this, Nepal has suffered a trade deficit of Rs 496.36 billion with India alone in the seven months of the current fiscal year.

Similarly, Nepal has suffered a trade deficit of Rs 171.23 billion with China, which is the second-largest trading country. Goods worth Rs 173.91 billion were imported from China till mid-February and exports worth Rs 1.85 billion were made.

The United Arab Emirates is number three on the list of countries with a high trade deficit for Nepal. During the seven months of the current fiscal year, the imports from UAE were Rs 15.69 billion and exports were worth Rs 1.58 billion. The trade deficit with the UAE is Rs 14.11 billion.

On the contrary, Nepal boasts the highest trade surplus with the United States among the countries engaged in foreign trade. During the reporting period, imports from the US totalled Rs 9.17 billion, while exports amounted to Rs 9.54 billion. This resulted in a trade surplus with the US of Rs 364.7 million.

The Department said Nepal has a trade deficit with Denmark, Norway, Afghanistan and the Maldives among other countries.

The highest import during the reporting period was petroleum products. In the first seven months, diesel amounting to Rs 77.41 billion, petrol Rs 38.82 billion and LP Gas Rs 30.31 billion were imported.

Likewise, iron-related materials worth Rs 22.66 billion and smartphones worth amounting to Rs 17.38 billion were imported in the reporting period.

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