KATHMANDU, July 4: Trade deficit increased by over 13.4 percent to Rs 302.75 billion during the first 10 months of the current fiscal year compared to the figure recorded during the corresponding period last year, thanks to a whopping rise in import of gold, petroleum products and cereals, shows an official data.
Trade and Export Promotion Center (TEPC) -- the official agency that compiles official trade data -- stated that imports to Nepal increased to Rs 363.20 billion during the review period this year, up by 13.6 percent from last year´s figure.
Exports from Nepal during the period reached to Rs 60.45 billion going up by 14.5 percent over last year figure.
Despite frequent disruptions in imports, Nepal imported petroleum products worth Rs 74.10 billion, up by almost 24 percent.
Iron and steel became the second largest imports with import volume increasing by marginal 2.2 percent to reach Rs 35.54 billion during the period. Imports of gold shot up by 177.7 percent to Rs 21.5 billion with the easing of daily import quota for the yellow metal by the government from 15 kg to 20 kg.
Despite 13.4 percent fall compared to earlier year´s figure, imports of machinery and their parts became the fourth largest import with volume touching Rs 19.07 billion. Imports of transport vehicles became the fifth largest imports despite 12.9 percent fall to Rs 18.28 billion compared to last year´s review period.
On the export front, exports of iron and steel products -- all time largest exports from Nepal-- rose around 20 percent to Rs 8.78 billion during the review period.
Yarn products worth Rs 5.36 billion, woolen carpet Rs 4.84 billion and textile Rs 4.17 billion were exported with the rise in their exports by 15.4 percent, 22.3 percent and 22.5 percent respectively.
Export of readmade garment, which was the fourth largest export last year, also rose by 8.6 percent to become the third largest export worth Rs 3.59 billion.