Nepal | April 19, 2019

Trade deficit with SAARC nations rises

Himalayan News Service

Kathmandu, August 10

The country witnessed a trade deficit with all the trading partners in the SAARC region except Afghanistan in fiscal 2015-16. According to the data recently unveiled by the Department of Customs (DoC) the country is gradually losing trade surplus with trading partners in the region.

In the last fiscal, the country had witnessed trade deficit worth Rs 713.13 billion as it imported goods worth Rs 781.72 billion against exports of Rs 68.59 billion. As compared to the previous fiscal, import and export growth deteriorated by 0.57 per cent and 19.49 per cent, respectively, while the trade deficit increased by 1.73 per cent.

As two-third of the country’s trade takes place with neighbouring India, the SAARC region covers a majority of the country’s total trade volume. Of the total trade conducted by the country worth Rs 850.31 billion, the country’s trade with the SAARC region covered around 62 per cent of the total trade.

The country was enjoying trade surplus with Bangladesh till 2013-14, but trade deficit with Bangladesh surged by a whopping Rs 3.52 billion in fiscal 2015-16, according to DoC.

The country has been facing high trade deficit with India among the regional trading partners. Trade deficit with India stood at Rs 442.82 billion in the last fiscal. Similarly, Nepal’s trade with Pakistan is also in a deficit of Rs 223.78 million.

The country imported goods worth Rs 267.27 million from Pakistan against exports of Rs 43.49 million in fiscal 2015-16. Trade deficit with Sri Lanka has also been rising.

The country imported goods worth Rs 203.58 million and exported goods worth Rs 3.34 million to Sri Lanka in the last fiscal, according to DoC.

Nepal has been facing trade deficit with Bhutan and Maldives as well.

However, the country enjoyed trade surplus with Afghanistan which was worth Rs 117.42 million as the country exported goods worth Rs 206.03 million to Afghanistan against imports of Rs 88.61 million in the review period.

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