India’s Merchandise Trade Crosses the US$1 Trillion Mark in 2022

Posted by Written by Naina Bhardwaj Reading Time: 3 minutes

In 2022, India’s merchandise trade surpassed the US$1 trillion mark, capping off a successful year. This feat comes at a time when the global economy is reeling under recessionary pressures due to monetary policy tightening in developed economies, high inflation, the Russia-Ukraine conflict, and global headwinds due to pandemic-led supply chain disruptions. In this article, we break down the latest trends and statistics surrounding this remarkable feat. 

India’s merchandise trade crossed the US$1 trillion mark in calendar year 2022, with the share of exports at US$450 billion and imports at US$723 billion. This feat comes at a time when there is mounting global uncertainty on the external front owing to factors like COVID-19 pandemic-led supply chain disruptions, global headwinds triggered by geopolitical unrest, and consequent economic pressure.

India Trade Scenario


India's trade statistics 2016-2022

India's monthly trade trends 2022

India’s export trends in 2022

As per data from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, outbound shipments grew 13.7 percent year-on-year (yoy) in 2022, while imports rose by 21 percent. During the period of January to June 2022, exports experienced robust double-digit growth in the range of 34 to 20 percent. This sustained growth in exports can be attributed to the pent-up demand due to the opening up of most developed economies in 2021 with the easing of COVID restrictions.

Thereafter, export growth began to slow to single digits starting in July, and India ended the year with a 12 percent contraction. This decline in export growth coincided with ongoing concerns about recessionary pressures in developed economies due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict, high inflation, and monetary policy tightening.

India’s export basket has been dominated by engineering goods, gems and jewelry, drugs and pharmaceuticals, as well as electronic goods.

India's top export commodities 2022

India saw a significant surge in exports to developed markets, such as the US, Singapore, Hong Kong, and European nations, such as the Netherlands, the UK, Belgium, and Germany, among others. In 2022, the US emerged as India’s top export destination, with outbound merchandise exports valued at US$73.53 billion. Other leading export destinations for Indian merchandise goods in 2022 were the UAE (US$28.83 billion), the Netherlands (US$16.76 billion), China (US$14.04 billion), and Bangladesh (US$12.23 billion).

India's top export destinations 2022

It must be noted that prior to 2022, a substantial amount of merchandise from India were being exported to neighboring countries, primarily the ASEAN nations.

India’s import trends in 2022

India’s merchandise exports have witnessed massive growth over the last few years, with China emerging as the top exporter for the Indian market. In 2022, imports from China amounted to US$94.68 billion. The other leading exporters for the Indian market included the UAE (US$49.07 billion), the US (US$46.27 billion), Saudi Arabia (US$40.81 billion), and Iraq (US$35.40 billion).

India's top import countries 2022

Of the total merchandise imports during the January-November period in 2022, two-thirds comprised five items: crude petroleum (US$150.5 billion), coal (US$47.31 billion), petroleum products (US$45.18 billion), gold (US$35.41 billion), and precious metals (US$29.96 billion).

India's top import commodities 2022

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