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U.S. emerges as India’s biggest trading partner in FY23 at $128.55 billion; China at second position

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The U.S. has emerged as India’s biggest trading partner in 2022-23 on account of increasing economic ties between the two countries.

According to the provisional data of the Commerce Ministry, the bilateral trade between India and the U.S. has increased by 7.65% to $128.55 in 2022-23 as against $119.5 billion in 2021-22. It was $80.51 billion in 2020-21.

Exports to the U.S. rose by 2.81% to $78.31 billion in 2022-23 as against $76.18 billion in 2021-22, while imports grew by about 16% to $50.24 billion, the data showed.

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On the other hand, during 2022-23, India’s two-way commerce with China declined by about 1.5% to $113.83 billion as against $115.42 billion in 2021-22.

Exports to China dipped by about 28% to $15.32 billion in 2022-23, while imports rose by 4.16% to $98.51 billion in the last fiscal. Trade gap widened to $83.2 billion in the last fiscal as against $72.91 billion in 2021-22.

Experts believe that the trend of increasing bilateral trade with the U.S. will continue in the coming years also as New Delhi and Washington are engaged in further strengthening the economic ties.

Federation of Indian Export Organisations (FIEO) President A. Sakthivel said that increasing exports of goods such as pharmaceutical, engineering and gems and jewellery is helping India to push its shipments to America.

“The trend of increasing trade with the U.S. will continue in the coming months also,” he said.

FIEO Vice President Khalid Khan said India is emerging as a trusted trading partner and global firms are reducing their dependence only on China for their supplies and are diversifying business into other countries like India.

“The bilateral trade between India and the U.S. will continue to grow as our exporters are getting good orders from that country,” Mr. Khan said.

Rakesh Mohan Joshi, Director of the Indian Institute of Plantation Management (IIPM), Bangalore, too said that India provides huge trade opportunities for the U.S. as India is the world’s third largest consumer market and the fastest growing market economy.

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“Major export items from India to the U.S. include petroleum, polished diamonds, pharmaceutical products, jewellery, light oils and petroleum, frozen shrimp, made ups etc. whereas major imports from the U.S. include petroleum, rough diamonds, liquified natural gas, gold, coal, waste and scrap, almonds etc,” Mr. Joshi said.

America is one of the few countries with which India has a trade surplus. In 2022-23, India had a trade surplus of $28 billion with the U.S.

The data showed that China was India’s top trading partner since 2013-14 till 2017-18 and also in 2020-21. Before China, the UAE was the country’s largest trading partner.

In 2022-23, the UAE with $76.16 billion, was the third largest trading partner of India. It was followed by Saudi Arabia ($52.72 billion), and Singapore ($35.55 billion).

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