Nepal’s import declined for four consecutive months

Nepal’s import declined for four consecutive months, a trend rarely in the last several years, contributing to decrease in widening trade deficit the country has been facing in recent years, Nepal’s Department of Customs said.

According to the latest customs data, Nepal’s import decreased by 6.92 percent to 450.29 billion Nepali Rupees (3.91 billion U.S. dollar) during the first four months of this fiscal 2019-20 that began in mid-July. On the other hand, exports surged by 23.9 percent to 36.27 billion Nepali Rupees (316 million U.S. dollar).

Earlier, Nepal witnessed drop in imports was in fiscal 2015-16 when the country faced alleged trade blockade from India. Even earlier, Nepal had witnessed such decline in imports only in fiscal year 2001-02, according to Nepal’s central bank’s data.

The country is seeing reversal in long trend of increased imports and slow growth in exports at a time when Nepal is witnessing decrease in remittance, the most important source of foreign exchange reserves. During the first quarter of this fiscal, remittance inflow in Nepal decreased by 4.9 percent, according to Nepal’s central bank.