End-September external debt swells to $455 bn

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    New Delhi, Dec 31 (IANS) Recording an increase of 3.1 percent, equivalent to $13.7 billion, over the level at the close of the last fiscal in March, India's external debt in end-September stood at $455.9 billion, the finance ministry said in a statement here Wednesday.

    "The rise in external debt during the period was due to long-term external debt particularly commercial borrowings and NRI deposits," it said.

    Long-term debt was $369.5 billion at end-September, showing an increase of 4.7 percent over the end-March 2014 level, while short-term debt declined by 3.2 percent to $86.4 billion.

    Short-term debt made up 18.9 percent of the country's total external debt at end-September, while the remaining was long-term debt.

    The share of commercial borrowings stood highest at 35.4 percent of total external debt, followed by NRI deposits at 23.8 percent and multilateral debt at 11.7 percent.

    Government external debt stood at $88.4 billion, (19.4 percent of total external debt) against $81.5 billion (18.4 percent) at end-March 2014.

    The share of US dollar denominated debt remained the highest in external debt stock at 60.1 percent at end-September 2014, followed by the Indian rupee (24.2 percent), Special Drawing Rights (6.5 percent), Japanese yen (4.5 percent), and euro (3.0 percent).

    The ratio of concessional debt to total external debt was 9.8 percent at end-September as compared to 10.5 percent at end-March.

    India's foreign exchange reserves provided a cover of 68.9 percent to the total external debt stock at end-September, against 68.8 percent at end-March.

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