Indian exports achieve 17.3 per cent growth

Himalayan News Service

New Delhi, April 18:

Indian exports grew by 17.3 per cent in the fiscal year ended on March 31 over the previous year, bettering the government’s target of 12 per cent, said an official statement issued today.

The statement said exports during 2003-04 are valued at a whopping $61.85 billion, up from $52.74 billion logged in the fiscal year ended on March 31 despite a significant rise in the value of the Indian rupee against the US dollar. The appreciation in the Indian rupee in the last one-year had caused jitters in the exporting community with companies expressing concern about their earnings and competitiveness.

The Indian currency has appreciated by nearly four per cent in the current calendar year after rising over five per cent last year on strong foreign fund inflows. Foreign investors have increased allocation in the local stock market in the last few months on hopes that the Indian economy would see a sharp rebound in the current fiscal. India is set to be one of the fastest-growing economies this year, perhaps surpassed only by China. India’s October-December gross domestic product (GDP) increased 8.4 per cent from its previous year’s level. The latest export figures is expected to bring cheers to the ruling National Democratic Alliance government, which is hard-selling its economic achievements to get re-elected in the upcoming parliamentary election. Indian general election will be held in five phases, beginning from Tuesday and ending on May 10.