India, the subcontinent imported US$507.6 billion worth of goods from around the globe in 2018, up by 10.5% since 2014 and up by 14.3% from 2017 to 2018.
From a continental perspective, 60.3% of India’s total imports by value in 2018 were purchased from fellow Asian countries. European trade partners supplied 15.8% of imports purchased by India while 8.2% worth originated from Africa with another 8.1% coming from exporters in North America. Smaller percentages arrived in India from Latin America (4.2%) excluding Mexico but including the Caribbean, and Oceania (2.9%) led by Australia.
Given India’s population of 1.297 billion people, it's total $507.6 billion spent on 2018 imports translates to roughly $400 in yearly product demand from every person living in the vast South Asian country.
The following product groups represent the highest dollar value in India’s import purchases during 2018. Also shown is the percentage share each product category represents in terms of overall imports into India.
- Mineral fuels including oil
- Gems, precious metals
- Electrical machinery, equipment
- Machinery including computers
- Organic chemicals
- Plastics, plastic articles
- Iron, steel
- Animal/vegetable fats, oils, waxes
- Optical, technical, medical apparatus
- Inorganic chemicals
India’s top 10 imports accounted for four-fifths (80%) of the overall value of its product purchases from other countries.
Imported mineral fuels including oil had the fastest-growing increase in value among India’s top 10 import categories, up 37% year over year.
In second place for expanding import purchases was the inorganic chemicals category via a 29.8% improvement, trailed by the 25.6% increase for organic chemicals and the 20.1% gain for machinery including computers.
The two declining categories for India’s imports were animal and vegetable fats, oils and waxes (down -14.4%) and gems and precious metals (down -12.6%).