ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
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Politics- Congress(I) and Communalism

Balance of Payments Runaway Trade Deficit THE country suffered the largest ever balance of trade deficit in 1983-84, according to provisional trade figures released this week, The official press note disclosing this is, however, captioned 'Exports continue to maintain upward trend' and the fact that the trade deficit was Rs 5,951 crore compared to Rs 5,410 crore in 1982-83 is thought fit to be mentioned only in the last paragraph of the note, the last sentence to be precise. Much of the note is devoted to asserting that export growth in 1983-84 had been adversely affected by the strike of port and dock workers. The only evidence cited in support is that in the first 11 months of 1983-84 the rate of growth of .exports had been over 12 per cent whereas for the year as a whole it had dropped to 8.8 per cent, implying that there had been a" very sharp drop in exports in March, the latter half of which month was affected by the port workers' strike. Quite apart from why the strike should have affected only exports and not imports as well, the month-wise figures of exports do not show any precipitate fall in exports in March; the ports handled Rs 763 crore worth of exports in that month compared to Rs 793 crore worth in the preceding month.

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