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CSO statistical release, 16 May 2018, 11am

Goods Exports and Imports

March 2018

Seasonally adjusted
€ million
 ExportsImportsSurplus
October 20179,7786,5363,243
November 201710,0176,8533,163
December 201710,6577,0123,644
January 201812,3886,8405,548
February 201810,9046,9453,959
March 201810,3736,3444,029

Seasonally adjusted goods exports decrease in March

Figure 1 Goods Exports and Imports seasonally adjusted
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Seasonally adjusted goods exports decreased by €531 million (-5%) to €10,373 million in March 2018, according to preliminary figures.

Seasonally adjusted goods imports decreased by €601 million (-9%) to €6,344 million leading to a slight increase of €70 million (+2%) in the seasonally adjusted trade surplus to €4,029 million in March 2018 (see Table 2).

Exports of Electrical machinery and apparatus decreases in March

The (unadjusted) value of goods exports for March 2018 was €11,244 million representing a decrease of €793 million (-7%) when compared with March 2017.  The value of goods exports for the period January to March 2018 was €33,521 million, an increase of €1,380 million (+4%) when compared with the first quarter 2017. 

Exports of Electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances decreased by €515 million (-55%) to €426 million in March 2018 compared with March 2017.
 
Exports of Organic chemicals increased by €1,024 million (+52%) to €3,001 million.
 
Exports of Other transport equipment, including aircraft decreased by €675 million (-76%) to €218 million over the same comparative period.

Imports of Mineral fuels increase in March

The (unadjusted) value of goods imports for March 2018 was €7,080 million, representing a slight increase of €23 million (+0.3%) when compared with March 2017.  The value of goods imports for January to March 2018 was €19,909 million, which is an increase of €712 million (+4%) compared with the first three months of 2017.
 
Mineral fuels imports increased by €52 million (+13%) to €463 million in March 2018 compared with March 2017.  The majority of this increase was in the imports of gas, perhaps reflecting the very cold weather experienced in March.
 
Imports of Other transport equipment, including aircraft decreased by €291 million (-16%) to €1,496 million.
 
Imports of Medical and pharmaceutical products increased by €364 million (+61%) to €961 million over the same comparative period.
 
The value of goods imports for March 2018 excluding SITC 79 (Other transport equipment, including aircraft) was €5,584 million, an increase of €314 million (+6%) when compared with the corresponding March 2017 figure of €5,270 million.

Exports to Great Britain decrease in March

Exports to Great Britain decreased by €63 million (-5%) to €1,117 million in March 2018 compared with March 2017.  This was largely due to a decrease in Machinery and transport equipment with a smaller decrease in Minerals fuels, lubricants and related materials.  There was a small increase in the exports of Food and live animals.

Imports from Great Britain increased by €75 million (+5%) to €1,545 million compared with March 2017.  This is almost entirely related to the increase in imports of Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials (see Table 5).

Geographic breakdown of goods exports and imports

The EU accounted for €5,819 million (52%) of total goods exports in March 2018 of which €1,668 million went to Belgium and €861 million went to Germany. Total EU exports in March decreased by €148 million (-2%) compared with March 2017.

The USA was the main non-EU destination accounting for €3,163 million (28%) of total exports in March 2018.

The EU accounted for €4,562 (64%) of total goods imports in March 2018, which is an increase of €83 million (+2%) compared with March 2017.

The USA with €950 million (13%) and China with €469 million (7%) were the main non-EU sources of imports. 

NOTE: From the October 2017 External trade release, the CSO have expanded the range of detailed trade data available on CSO’s StatBank.  The extra detail includes further breakdown of trade at SITC2 level by country and area.  The countries and area for which this detail is available are those included in Table 4 of the release.  The data is available on a month by month basis for the periods January 2015 to the latest month of release and on an annual basis from 2010 to 2017.  Links to these data are contained within the body of the release.  The latest month's data should be treated as provisional.  For queries on trade with countries not included in the list, please contact trade@cso.ie.