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Self reliant economy doomed by imports


Pandemic outbreaks came for rethinking world's fate for communication, travel and living standard. What's new normal is what will happen in a pandemic situation when all people of the world suffer. Consumer need is volatile where the economy is unsustainable. In the past several years this situation was getting handled by world top players. 

India imported US$480 billion worth of goods from around the globe in 2019, up by 22.8% since 2015 but down by -5.7% from 2018 to 2019. 

India's imports data by World top exports

The following product groups represent the highest dollar value in India’s import purchases during 2019. Also shown is the percentage share each product category represents in terms of overall imports into India.

Top Imports

1.      Mineral fuels including oil: US$153.5 billion (32% of total imports)

2.      Gems, precious metals: $60 billion (12.5%)

3.      Electrical machinery, equipment: $50.4 billion (10.5%)

4.      Machinery including computers: $44.1 billion (9.2%)

5.      Organic chemicals: $20.5 billion (4.3%)

6.      Plastics, plastic articles: $14.6 billion (3.1%)

7.      Iron, steel: $11.6 billion (2.4%)

8.      Animal/vegetable fats, oils, waxes: $9.6 billion (2%)

9.      Optical, technical, medical apparatus: $9.5 billion (2%)

10.  Fertilizers: $7.3 billion (1.5%)

India’s top 10 imports accounted for about four-fifths (79.4%) of the overall value of its product purchases from other countries.

Imported fertilizers posted the fastest increase in value among India’s top 10 import categories, up 23.3% from 2018 to 2019. The other top category to gain was machinery including computers via a 1.6% improvement.

Leading the decliners were organic chemicals (down -9.3%), mineral fuels including oil (also down -9.3%) then gems and precious metals (down -7.8%).
Note that the results listed above are at the categorized two-digit Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) code level. 


In 2019, Indian importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of mineral fuels-related products.

11.  Crude oil: US$102.3 billion (down -11.1% from 2018)

12.  Coal, solid fuels made from coal: $23 billion (down -6.5%)

13.  Petroleum gases: $17.4 billion (down -8.8%)

14.  Processed petroleum oils: $6.4 billion (up 11.8%)

15.  Petroleum oil residues: $2.6 billion (up 19.9%)

16.  Coke, semi-coke: $1.1 billion (down -38.3%)

17.  Coal tar oils (high temperature distillation): $490.2 million (down -17%)

18.  Petroleum jelly, mineral waxes: $117 million (down -4.2%)

19.  Tar pitch, coke: $37.1 million (down -57.7%)

20.  Electrical energy: $25.5 million (down -18.2%)

Among these import subcategories, Indian purchases of petroleum oil residues (up 19.9%) and processed petroleum oils (up 11.8%) grew from 2018 to 2019.



In 2019, Indian importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of gems and precious metals.

21.  Gold (unwrought): US$32.2 billion (up 0.9% from 2018)

22.  Diamonds (unmounted/unset): $22 billion (down -17.4%)

23.  Silver (unwrought): $3 billion (down -21.7%)

24.  Precious/semi-precious stones (unstrung): $1.3 billion (up 19.9%)

25.  Jewelry: $601.8 million (down -9.2%)

26.  Synthetic precious stones: $480 million (up 50.8%)

27.  Platinum (unwrought): $284.5 million (down -0.7%)

28.  Imitation jewelry: $40.4 million (up 0.3%)

29.  Precious stone dust, powder: $26.2 million (down -14.2%)

30.  Pearls: $21.4 million (down -90.2%)

Among these import subcategories, Indian purchases of synthetic precious stones (up 50.8%), unstrung precious and semi-precious stones (up 19.9%) then unwrought gold (up 0.9%) grew at the fastest pace from 2018 to 2019.


In 2019, Indian importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of electric items including consumer electronics.

31.  Phone system devices including smartphones: US$13.6 billion (down -27.7% from 2018)

32.  Integrated circuits/microassemblies: $9.9 billion (up 36.2%)

33.  Solar power diodes/semi-conductors: $3.2 billion (down -9%)

34.  Electrical converters/power units: $2.2 billion (up 1.3%)

35.  TV receivers/monitors/projectors: $2 billion (down -3.5%)

36.  TV receiver/transmit/digital cameras: $1.9 billion (up 20.3%)

37.  Electric storage batteries: $1.7 billion (down -1%)

38.  Lower-voltage switches, fuses: $1.5 billion (down -3.8%)

39.  TV/radio/radar device parts: $1.5 billion (up 18.9%)

40.  Unrecorded sound media: $1.4 billion (down -5.3%)

Among these import subcategories, Indian purchases of integrated circuits and microassemblies (up 36.2%), TV receivers, transmitters and digital cameras (up 20.3%) then TV radio and radar device parts (up 18.9%) grew at the fastest pace from 2018 to 2019.


In 2019, Indian importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of machinery including computers.

41.  Computers, optical readers: US$6.6 billion (up 4% from 2018)

42.  Turbo-jets: $3.9 billion (up 28.6%)

43.  Miscellaneous machinery: $2.1 billion (down -4.6%)

44.  Air or vacuum pumps: $1.9 billion (up 6.1%)

45.  Computer parts, accessories: $1.6 billion (up 1.4%)

46.  Taps, valves, similar appliances: $1.5 billion (up 4.1%)

47.  Printing machinery: $1.4 billion (down -10%)

48.  Rubber/plastic article making machines: $1.4 billion (up 35.4%)

49.  Machinery parts: $1.4 billion (down -5.8%)

50.  Transmission shafts, gears, clutches: $1.2 billion (down -0.7%)

Among these import subcategories, Indian purchases of rubber or plastic article-making machines (up 35.4%), turbo-jets (up 28.6%) then air or vacuum pumps (up 6.1%) grew at the fastest pace from 2018 to 2019.



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