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Why our boycott calls against China will fail

Indian politicians are currently leading a campaign to boycott Chinese goods. But an IndiaSpend analysis shows why this will fail: China is India’s largest trade partner, a sixth of India’s imports are Chinese, up from a 10th in 2011-12, while India’s exports to its rival have halved over the same period. Imports from China grew at 20 per cent over two years and 5 per cent over five years, to $61 billion. These goods range from power plants and set-top boxes to Ganesh idols. This is despite the fact that India’s imports have generally fallen over the last five years — from $490 billion to $380 billion –because of a fall in global oil prices.

India’s exports to China have fallen from $18 billion (Rs 86,000 crore) in 2011-12 to $9 billion (Rs 58,000 crore) in 2015-16. Apart from cotton, copper, petroleum and industrial machinery, India does not export much to China. This means that India buys six times the merchandise it sells to China.

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