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For more information on this release:
E-mail: Trade@cso.ie Ciarán Counihan (+353) 1 498 4215 Damian Malone (+353) 1 498 4206
For general information on CSO statistics:
information@cso.ie (+353) 21 453 5000 Visit StatCentral.ie, the portal to Ireland's official statistics On-line ISSN 2009-5155
CSO statistical release, , 11am

Goods Exports and Imports

October 2018

Seasonally adjusted
€ million
 ExportsImportsSurplus
May 201811,7506,5835,167
June 201811,7827,9093,873
July 201811,8967,9003,997
August 201811,4287,7543,673
September 201811,6548,3833,272
October 201812,8458,0044,841

Seasonally adjusted goods exports increased by 10% in October

Figure 1 Goods Exports and Imports seasonally adjusted
go to full release

The value of seasonally adjusted goods exports increased by €1,191 million (+10%) to €12,845 million in October 2018, according to preliminary figures.
 
The value of goods imports decreased by €379 million (-5%) to €8,004 million on a seasonally adjusted basis. This means that there was an increase of €1,570 million (+48%) in the seasonally adjusted trade surplus to €4,841 million in October 2018 (see Table 2).

Trade exports increased by 33% in October

The (unadjusted) value of goods exports for October 2018 was €12,852 million representing an increase of €3,207 million (+33%) when compared with October 2017. The value of goods exports for the period January to October 2018 was €116,409 million, an increase of €14,599 million (+14%), when compared with the first ten months of 2017.
 
The biggest category of goods exports in October 2018 was Medical and pharmaceutical products. Exports of these goods accounted for two-fifths (40%) of total goods exports in October 2018. Exports of Medical and pharmaceutical products increased by €2,136 million (+71%) to €5,154 million in October 2018 when compared with October 2017.
 
Exports of Organic chemicals increased by €257 million (+16%) to €1,907 million in October 2018 and accounted for 15% of total goods exports.
 
Exports of Professional, scientific and controlling apparatus grew by €94 million (+20%) to €558 million in October 2018, over the same comparative period.

Imports grew by 26% in October

The (unadjusted) value of goods imports for October 2018 was €8,588 million representing an increase of €1,770 million (+26%), when compared with October 2017. The value of goods imports for the period January to October 2018 was €72,984 million, an increase of €7,945 million (+12%), when compared with January to October 2017.
 
Imports of Other transport equipment, including aircraft increased by €742 million (+47%) to €2,328 million compared with October 2017, and accounted for 27% of the total value of imports.
 
Imports of Petroleum products increased by €225 million (+68%) to €555 million in October 2018.
 
Imports of Office machines and automatic data processing machines were valued at €507 million in October 2018, an increase of €242 million (+91%) over the same comparative period.

Imports from Great Britain increased by 5% in October

Imports from Great Britain comprised 19% of total imports in October 2018. The largest categories of goods were Food and live animals (€311 million), Mineral fuels (€283 million), Machinery and Transport equipment (€279 million) and Chemicals and related products (€228 million). 

Imports from Great Britain increased by €80 million (+5%) to €1,631 million in October 2018 compared with October 2017. There were increases in the imports of Mineral fuels, Miscellaneous manufacturing equipment, and Food and live animals (see Table 5).
 
Imports from Great Britain for the period January to October 2018 were €14,823 million, an increase of €616 million (+4%) when compared with the first ten months of 2017. 

Exports to Great Britain accounted for 9% of total exports in October 2018.  The most significant categories were Food and live animals (€379 million) and Chemicals and related products (€284 million).

Exports to Great Britain increased by €21 million (+2%) to €1,166 million in October 2018, when compared with October 2017.  Exports of Mineral fuels, and Food and live animals increased, and there was a fall in the exports of Chemicals and related products.

Exports to Great Britain for the period January to October 2018 were €11,447 million, which is a decrease of €622 million (-5%) compared with January to October 2017. 

Geographic breakdown of goods exports and imports

The EU accounted for €6,052 million (47%) of total exports in October 2018, of which €1,186 million went to Belgium and €965 million went to Germany. Exports to EU countries in October 2018 increased by €888 million (+17%) compared with October 2017. 

The USA was the main non-EU destination accounting for €3,599 million (28%) of total exports in October 2018. Imports from the EU were €4,848 million (56%) of total imports in October 2018, which is an increase of €852 million (+21%) over the same month in 2017.

The USA with €1,659 million (19%) and China with €555 million (6%) were the main non-EU sources of imports. 

This map is © Ordnance Survey Ireland. All rights reserved. License number 01/05/001.
This map is © Ordnance Survey Ireland. All rights reserved. License number 01/05/001.
Table 1 Goods Exports and Imports summary analysis
PeriodValue1Volume index2Unit value index2 
ExportsImportsTrade surplusBase year 2010=100
€m€m€mExportsImportsExportsImportsTerms of trade3
2010 90,92448,69542,229 100.0  100.0  100.0  100.0  100.0
201193,19153,03540,155 106.1  110.4  96.6  98.7  97.9
2012 93,50756,17937,328 100.6  120.2  102.2  96.0  106.5
201389,18255,78733,394 101.1  123.5  97.0  92.8  104.6
201492,61662,15830,458 103.8  130.1  98.2  98.1  100.1
2015112,40770,11142,296 115.5  143.6  106.8  100.3  106.5
2016119,29274,23745,055 125.6  158.2  102.7  93.3  110.2
2017122,71179,27143,440 135.8  168.9  99.3  96.1  103.3
         
2015Quarter 126,04316,8649,179 110.0  138.6  104.0  99.9  104.2
 Quarter 228,70516,98311,721 114.7  134.9  110.1  103.6  106.4
 Quarter 327,47716,73810,739 114.5  134.9  105.5  102.1  103.5
 Quarter 430,18319,52610,657 123.6  168.1  107.4  95.4  112.5
2016Quarter 127,81317,62310,190 119.5  158.0  100.7  89.4  112.6
 Quarter 230,30718,94411,363 129.0  159.5  102.0  94.8  107.6
 Quarter 330,36118,13112,229 126.5  152.5  103.6  94.2  110.1
 Quarter 430,81219,53811,273 127.6  162.8  104.6  94.7  110.5
2017Quarter 132,14119,22212,919 137.0  160.2  103.3  98.4  104.9
 Quarter 231,04121,1489,893 134.2  182.1  101.9  95.6  106.7
 Quarter 328,98317,85211,131 129.1  152.0  98.1  94.9  103.4
 Quarter 430,54621,0499,497 141.0  176.8  93.8  95.4  98.2
2018Quarter 133,87420,22713,647 159.0  175.9  93.8  94.5  99.3
 Quarter 235,58221,40614,176 168.5  182.8  92.8  96.5  96.4
 Quarter 334,10122,76411,338 156.1  185.3  96.2  100.9  95.4
  
2015January8,2905,3682,922 106.3  131.7  102.9  100.5  102.4
 February8,3485,1363,212 106.9  129.5  103.0  97.8  105.4
 March9,4056,3603,045 116.8  154.6  106.2  101.4  104.8
 April9,6145,6373,977 115.0  131.8  110.3  105.4  104.6
 May9,1805,5353,645 109.5  127.7  110.6  106.8  103.6
 June9,9115,8114,099 119.5  145.3  109.4  98.5  111.0
 July9,4135,7653,648 115.1  138.3  107.9  102.7  105.0
 August8,6265,2093,416 112.1  122.5  101.6  104.8  97.0
 September9,4385,7633,675 116.3  143.8  107.1  98.7  108.5
 October10,7546,3364,418 128.0  164.7  110.9  94.8  116.9
 November10,1796,1963,983 128.2  158.0  104.8  96.6  108.4
 December9,2516,9942,256 114.5  181.6  106.6  94.9  112.3
         
2016January8,8935,1433,750 120.9  142.6  95.6  87.0  110.0
 February8,5665,4813,085 105.0  144.4  106.0  91.6  115.8
 March10,3546,9993,355 132.6  187.0  100.6  89.7  112.1
 April10,0535,5934,460 125.8  144.6  104.1  93.4  111.5
 May9,3856,4122,973 123.6  164.7  99.0  94.2  105.0
 June10,8686,9383,930 137.7  169.3  102.8  96.7  106.4
 July9,4115,7383,672 120.4  144.2  101.9  96.2  106.0
 August10,4645,7234,742 130.8  146.1  103.4  93.1  111.1
 September10,4866,6703,815 128.2  167.1  105.6  93.4  113.1
 October10,1995,7104,489 129.3  142.6  103.1  95.9  107.5
 November11,2017,2473,954 140.6  183.9  104.1  94.4  110.3
 December9,4126,5812,831 113.0  162.0  106.6  93.7  113.8
         
2017January9,9045,8154,089 122.8  144.7  106.4  98.9  107.6
 February10,2006,3403,860 135.1  158.7  99.6  98.3  101.3
March12,0377,0674,970 153.0  177.2  103.9  98.1  105.8
April9,8636,6583,205 122.6  167.2  106.2  98.0  108.4
May10,5617,4373,124 139.3  193.4  100.0  94.7  105.7
June10,6187,0533,565 140.6  185.6  99.6  94.0  106.0
July9,1785,4123,766 117.4  140.2  103.2  95.1  108.5
August9,6176,0993,518 126.1  153.9  98.2  93.6  104.9
September10,1886,3413,847 143.8  161.8  93.0  96.1  96.8
October9,6456,8182,827 143.2  180.8  88.3  92.5  95.5
November10,8497,2263,623 151.6  187.0  95.0  96.0  98.9
December10,0537,0053,048 128.3  162.7  98.0  97.7  100.3
        
20184January12,1036,5385,565166.7171.895.893.8102.2
 February10,4026,4233,980144.2166.695.295.0100.2
 March11,3697,2674,102166.1189.390.394.695.5
 April11,0456,5244,520162.8161.989.599.989.6
 May11,7886,9384,850166.9185.993.292.0101.4
 June12,7497,9434,806175.7200.795.797.698.1
 July11,0687,6153,453151.8182.096.3103.193.3
 August11,5347,1714,364162.7184.193.696.097.5
 September11,4997,9783,521153.9189.998.6103.595.3
 October12,8528,5884,264178.8214.094.998.995.9
1 Trade statistics revised since 2000, see background notes.
2 Monthly data have been rescaled to make their average equal to the annual.
3 Export unit value index divided by Import unit value index.
4 Revised. October 2018 is based on current Intrastat response levels. See background notes.
Table 2 Goods Exports and Imports seasonally adjusted1 series
PeriodValueVolume index
ExportsImportsTrade surplusBase year 2010=100
€m€m€mExportsImports
2015Quarter 126,28616,06210,224 112.0  130.9
 Quarter 228,46017,27111,189 112.9  134.8
 Quarter 327,21117,6129,599 113.7  143.5
 Quarter 430,82319,20511,618 125.8  167.6
2016Quarter 127,86616,68211,184 119.7  149.6
 Quarter 229,75919,10110,659 126.5  161.3
 Quarter 330,22119,06911,152 125.7  161.2
 Quarter 431,01019,29411,716 129.0  159.6
2017Quarter 132,94118,70314,239 137.6  154.3
 Quarter 230,23821,4738,765 131.1  186.1
 Quarter 329,33218,76310,569 131.4  162.1
 Quarter 430,54420,6009,943 142.2  170.7
2018Quarter 134,01920,43813,581 157.4  173.8
 Quarter 234,72621,29613,431 165.4  182.6
 Quarter 334,97824,03610,942 161.1  199.1
       
2015January8,6415,0073,633 110.1  126.5
 February8,9665,3163,650 115.2  130.5
 March8,6795,7392,941 110.6  135.6
 April9,7405,6784,061 117.7  129.0
 May9,3765,8873,489 107.8  133.7
 June9,3455,7063,639 113.3  141.7
 July9,0766,1022,974 113.6  147.5
 August9,1505,7253,425 117.8  137.4
 September8,9865,7863,200 109.6  145.7
 October10,8206,2504,570 128.0  165.5
 November9,5216,1083,413 120.4  158.1
 December10,4826,8463,635 129.0  179.1
       
2016January9,4495,0914,358 127.0  145.3
 February8,9445,5283,417 108.7  143.8
 March9,4736,0643,409 123.3  159.6
 April9,8755,7214,154 125.3  148.7
 May9,6436,5123,132 124.8  167.8
 June10,2416,8683,373 129.4  167.4
 July9,2026,1963,006 118.3  156.8
 August 10,6985,9874,711 132.1  155.2
 September10,3216,8863,435 126.7  171.6
 October10,3565,8014,555 130.1  144.4
 November10,4206,8593,562 130.0  171.3
 December10,2346,6343,600 127.0  163.1
       
2017January10,7745,6925,083 129.5  140.8
 February11,1236,8154,308 141.8  168.3
 March11,0446,1964,848 141.4  153.9
 April9,8607,1952,664 124.0  181.5
 May10,5597,2773,282 136.6  192.1
 June9,8196,9692,849 132.7  184.7
 July9,7295,7573,972 124.5  151.1
 August9,6906,4213,268 126.4  163.3
 September9,9146,5853,329 143.3  172.0
 October9,8396,5683,271 141.9  172.4
 November9,9626,7933,169 140.5  172.9
 December10,7437,2393,504 144.3  166.7
       
2018January12,5156,9335,582 169.4  175.9
 February11,0166,9934,022 149.9  178.7
 March10,4896,5123,977 152.9  166.8
 April11,1946,8034,391 168.8  171.5
 May11,7506,5835,167 163.8  180.0
 June11,7827,9093,873 163.7  196.2
 July11,8967,9003,997 165.2  191.1
 August11,4287,7543,673 161.9  203.8
 September11,6548,3833,272 156.3  202.4
 October12,8458,0044,841 171.8  196.8
1 Based on seasonal patterns up to December 2017. Accordingly all values in this table may have been revised.
Table 3 Goods Exports and Imports classified by commodity1
€million
SITC (Rev 4)ExportsImports
OctOctJan-OctJan-OctOctOctJan-OctJan-Oct
20172018201720182017201820172018
0Food and live animals9439499,3679,1066527635,8826,403
0Live animals other than animals of Division 0339593182805058167148
1Meat and meat preparations3283333,1343,2298994801859
2Dairy products and birds' eggs1902042,0052,1286663649707
3Fish, crustaceans, molluscs and preparations thereof42444894722527244238
4Cereals and cereal preparations40433473431001289031,037
5Vegetables and fruit22232532731011111,0481,113
6Sugars, sugar preparations and honey12121311233334318307
7Coffee, tea, cocoa, spices and manufactures thereof31373133226368495502
8Feeding stuff for animals (excluding unmilled cereals)273326128262118662869
9Miscellaneous edible products and preparations2111602,1161,6546262595623
1Beverages and tobacco1351401,1141,1528887757723
11Beverages 1351401,1101,1517580672680
12Tobacco and tobacco manufactures00411378443
2Crude materials, inedible, except fuels1451661,4811,6298084755768
21Hides, skins and furskins, raw118109890000
22Oil seeds and oleaginous fruits 1076222727
23Crude rubber (including synthetic and reclaimed) 001111910
24Cork and wood13151281471818139149
25Pulp and waste paper656350555139
26Textile fibres and their wastes1212109111111210
27Crude fertilisers and minerals (excluding coal, petroleum and precious stones)11121111241217136140
28Metalliferous ores and metal scrap821008489912023202207
29Crude animal and vegetable materials nes10121051102116179188
3Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials701198239444256713,8864,926
32Coal, coke and briquettes8782881720159163
33Petroleum, petroleum products and related materials49956316683305553,0833,780
34Gas, natural and manufactured1112177285607855
35Electric current12159817171137129
4Animal and vegetable oils, fats and waxes6478541921221220
41Animal oils and fats636844211614
42Fixed vegetable fats and oils11981619189190
43Animal or vegetable fats and oils, processed; waxes0011211717
5Chemicals and related products5,6418,09856,37172,4021,3181,46814,59017,403
51Organic chemicals1,6501,90715,95421,6532953672,8622,828
52Inorganic chemicals1591171582832271283
53Dyeing, tanning and colouring materials23113071162220209191
54Medical and pharmaceutical products3,0185,15429,78639,8595976737,63710,360
55Essential oils; perfume materials; toilet and cleansing preparations5646116,4006,5061371201,2161,115
56Fertilisers (other than those of Division 27)00692729321400
57Plastics in primary forms29442953787984791838
58Plastics in non-primary forms38384104045259516562
59Chemical materials and products nes3043233,0983,3188184767825
6Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material1922061,9051,9584884924,2504,480
61Leather; leather manufactures nes; dressed furskins423722221616
62Rubber manufactures nes7966762627252274
63Cork and wood manufactures (excluding furniture)24262402622726244244
64Paper, paperboard and articles thereof16151331357685727756
65Textile yarn, fabrics, made-up articles and related products13141261344547401425
66Non-metallic mineral manufactures nes39453963985560468492
67Iron and steel15171451557273619688
68Non-ferrous metals10988968250503490
69Manufactures of metals nes65696756781031231,0211,096
7Machinery and transport equipment1,2211,68017,42015,1372,7493,97926,01329,152
71Power generating machinery and equipment526662972973103835786
72Machinery specialised for particular industries58495946231001901,0761,559
73Metalworking machinery33292691599120
74General industrial machinery and equipment nes and parts nes1211631,5381,5831361601,3111,490
75Office machines and automatic data processing machines (including computers)3134012,8653,5022665072,7353,685
76Telecommunications and sound equipment731058321,0341541781,2811,458
77Electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances nes and parts3954775,5734,2292152622,1072,282
78Road vehicles (including air-cushion vehicles)26302682832112352,7632,789
79Other transport equipment (including aircraft)1803855,0933,1281,5862,32813,80714,984
8Miscellaneous manufactured articles1,1871,38012,40713,0508008526,8057,027
81Prefab buildings; plumbing and electrical fixtures and fittings14181211262831221238
82Furniture and parts thereof; bedding, cushions etc15171531574047395442
83Travel goods, handbags and similar containers2221191311121118
84Articles of apparel; clothing accessories21232251781761881,5081,528
85Footwear4434323536342344
87Professional, scientific and controlling apparatus nes4645585,0495,2211531651,4271,511
88Photographic apparatus; optical goods; watches and clocks1101161,1281,1404443361345
89Miscellaneous manufactured articles nes5566435,6766,1773113312,4302,501
9Commodities and transactions not classified elsewhere43423263864044350405
Unclassified estimates261675195911591281,5291,476
           
Total9,64512,851101,810116,4096,8188,58865,04072,984
1 Trade statistics revised since 2000. October 2018 is based on current Intrastat response levels. See background notes.
2 Estimates for which a commodity classification is not available.
Table 4 Goods Exports and Imports classified by country1
€million
CountryExportsImports
OctOctJan-OctJan-OctOctOctJan-OctJan-Oct
20172018201720182017201820172018
Austria41303243582228236268
Belgium1,1591,18610,88614,7891142101,1741,421
Bulgaria997485382142
Croatia3432401199
Cyprus22222000321
Czech Republic38693254904184328579
Denmark59585226153439358428
Estonia321918111015
Finland27212742481911143122
France6205074,4944,5818681,4018,4928,775
Germany6369658,4648,7125596135,8549,297
Great Britain1,1451,16612,06911,4471,5511,63114,20714,823
Greece4527279463575459
Hungary 20252452647997323
Italy 2244802,1573,0351411181,3141,345
Latvia6155373444239
Lithuania222026556485
Luxembourg1121971462102465
Malta33281171189
Netherlands5087094,8446,3782272541,9862,494
Northern Ireland1581881,6041,6761201331,1431,228
Poland1001231,0418916072532535
Portugal36423923642221219176
Romania23362692919138576
Slovakia764865563845
Slovenia456371322624
Spain1892442,1672,1321021171,0801,224
Sweden69916367655934409566
EU country not specified21619694165915165483
Total EU5,1646,05252,14258,3233,9964,84838,12344,576
  of which United Kingdom1,3041,35413,67313,1221,6721,76515,35016,051
Euro-Zone33,5234,26534,63141,5952,1012,80920,76825,484
        
Australia537672272314157689
Brazil17341442923031177191
Canada861328901,1993545511444
China42715014,3274,1604295553,6684,339
India26242842726848591483
Japan2552551,9252,943851409701,232
Malaysia19191541716645307331
Mexico1171091,2121,1792129231286
Norway194131130096121962863
Russia43474074441948274484
Saudi Arabia60415984561178
Singapore455057457615056289399
South Africa242719523410109396
South Korea4467544524121103834648
Switzerland5581,1885,0516,16240121467588
Taiwan27262132772139243290
Thailand16121461183146320362
Turkey50324454904261456452
USA2,4623,59927,82432,7411,3221,65913,74212,622
Other countries2873243,3373,3601802641,9412,016
Country unknown511943661,465403047562,185
Total Non-EU4,4816,80049,66858,0862,8223,74026,91728,408
     
Total9,64512,851101,810116,4096,8188,58865,04072,984
1 Trade statistics revised since 2000. October 2018 is based on current Intrastat response levels. See background notes.
2 Includes estimates for traders below the Intrastat threshold and transactions where the EU country was not specified.
3 Euro-zone members from January 2015: Austria, Belgium, Germany, Spain, Finland, France, Luxembourg, Greece, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovenia, Malta, Cyprus, Slovakia, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
4 China includes Hong Kong and Macao.
5 Trade for which the country of origin or country of final destination is unknown.
Table 5 Goods Exports and Imports classified by commodity and principal countries1
€million
  ExportsImports
Country by Section level of SITCOctOctJan-OctJan-OctOctOctJan-OctJan-Oct
20172018201720182017201820172018
Great Britain1,1451,16612,06911,4471,5511,63114,20714,823
0Food and live animals3503793,2353,3022923112,4112,580
1Beverages and tobacco19191731682229230242
2Crude materials, inedible, except fuels31323303731615158169
3Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials26562994252632832,1332,526
4Animal and vegetable oils, fats and waxes111114434036
5Chemicals and related products3702844,1483,3712272282,5592,243
6Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material84908068481661801,5191,634
7Machinery and transport equipment1361551,8321,6512622792,4862,676
8Miscellaneous manufactured articles1011189691,0172042251,7731,848
9Commodities and transactions not classified elsewhere28322662789677896868
Other EU24,0184,88640,07446,8772,4443,21623,91529,753
0Food and live animals3483513,5223,6222632942,5162,686
1Beverages and tobacco39423213394845381357
2Crude materials, inedible, except fuels86897978872732264266
3Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials274922124657103341757
4Animal and vegetable oils, fats and waxes4363371214138140
5Chemicals and related products2,4653,05923,55830,4824705464,8299,451
6Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material77827457931981691,5631,598
7Machinery and transport equipment4476516,0535,3101,1251,76711,62912,205
8Miscellaneous manufactured articles4775124,4354,7211641741,4871,517
9Commodities and transactions not classified elsewhere47493584398172768775
USA2,4623,59927,82432,7411,3221,65913,74212,622
0Food and live animals32334122652441179225
1Beverages and tobacco5956465481211514
2Crude materials, inedible, except fuels333631754442
3Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials160169104095155332
4Animal and vegetable oils, fats and waxes00000011
5Chemicals and related products1,5962,77017,21924,1024163325,0452,867
6Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material14181931473436330348
7Machinery and transport equipment3402204,6662,7406981,0186,8527,654
8Miscellaneous manufactured articles3924954,6104,8241321221,0351,026
9Commodities and transactions not classified elsewhere115534891087113
China32715014,3274,1604295553,6684,339
0Food and live animals8680752625343036
1Beverages and tobacco00420000
2Crude materials, inedible, except fuels556146443532
3Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials001510000
4Animal and vegetable oils, fats and waxes00110000
5Chemicals and related products431507121,2742125245518
6Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material3225354350396405
7Machinery and transport equipment932212,3091,6211943001,7762,120
8Miscellaneous manufactured articles41444625051581661,1271,174
9Commodities and transactions not classified elsewhere0000665853
Rest of World1,7482,69917,51721,1841,0711,5279,50711,447
0Food and live animals1271061,4451,29270112745875
1Beverages and tobacco18231511611712130110
2Crude materials, inedible, except fuels21382572922628254260
3Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials1141331181051901,2571,310
4Animal and vegetable oils, fats and waxes0032344243
5Chemicals and related products1,1681,83510,73513,1731843371,9122,324
6Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material13141351354756443495
7Machinery and transport equipment2054332,5603,8154716153,2714,497
8Miscellaneous manufactured articles1772121,9311,9841401661,3831,461
9Commodities and transactions not classified elsewhere1924167211767072
         
Total9,64512,851101,810116,4096,8188,58865,04072,984
1 Trade statistics revised since 2000. October 2018 is based on current Intrastat response levels. See background notes.
2 Includes estimates for traders below the Intrastat threshold and transactions where the EU country was not specified.
3 China includes Hong Kong and Macao.

Background Notes

Introduction

Goods Exports and Imports statistics provide data on the movement of goods between countries. The statistics are a combination of Customs-based non-EU trade statistics and data from the Intrastat Survey of Irish traders involved in trade with other EU member states. The collection of trade data is the responsibility of VIMA (a branch of Revenue). The CSO is responsible for processing and disseminating the data.

Revisions to the Trade in Goods statistics

Since May 2015, significant revisions were incorporated into International Trade in Goods statistics.  While the most significant revision is due to recording trade in aircraft on a "transfer of economic ownership" basis, other revisions were incorporated into the Trade data back to 2000. 

Along with the aircraft revisions Goods Exports revisions also include upward revisions due to revaluing some products that had previously been recorded on a “transfer of economic ownership” basis, which was not in line with goods statistics methodology.  Also Goods Imports revisions include downward revisions due to a change in the estimation methodology for non-response.

The technical note gives more detail on the revised trade in aircraft methodology and explains the impact the revisions will have on Trade in Goods, National Accounts and Balance of Payments.

Standard Revisions

Trade figures are subject to revision on the incorporation of late Intrastat and VAT returns and corrections made by traders. When the preliminary results for a month are published, the results for months -1 (September 2018 in this publication), -4 (June 2018) and -8 (February 2018) are revised. Following the move to a "transfer of economic ownership" basis for recording exports and imports of aircraft, SITC 79 figures are subject to revision on the incorporation of transactions from quarterly Balance of Payments (BoP) surveys. Such revisions will generally be incorporated into Goods Exports and Imports releases that coincide with quarterly BoP publications, i.e. when initial results are published for January, April, July and October.

Intrastat System

The Intrastat system has two components. Firstly, the Intrastat survey (conducted by the Revenue Commissioners), in which traders, above the Intrastat survey trade thresholds, make detailed monthly returns giving information on the quantity and value of all exports to or imports from EU countries.

The total number of traders required to make a detailed import return is around 5,200 while around 2,200 must make a detailed export return. The response rate in terms of number of traders in October 2018 was 71%, covering an estimated 95% of the total value of intra-EU trade (these response rates will have increased by the next time data for October is published).

The second component of the Intrastat system is the regular VAT return, on which all traders are required to record the total value of goods imported from and exported to other EU countries. This information provides the basis for determining total EU trade for those traders below the Intrastat survey thresholds. It is also used to maintain the register of EU traders.

Extrastat System

The statistics of trade with non-EU countries are compiled from the documents supplied by importers and exporters to the Customs authorities. The document is the Single Administrative Document (SAD) used for Customs clearance purposes.

Estimation

The figures in this release include estimates for traders above the Intrastat thresholds who did not make detailed returns for the period and for traders below the thresholds who did not provide aggregate intra-EU trade figures on their VAT returns.

Estimates for Intrastat non-respondents are apportioned to individual commodities and countries whenever previous Intrastat returns are available. Estimates for traders below the Intrastat thresholds are assigned to partner country where possible, but not to commodity.

More information is now being processed on lower value transactions. Prior to January 2012, transactions below €254 were grouped together, this value has now decreased to €127. Therefore, this has resulted in more detail being available at commodity level in Table 3 and at country level in Tables 4 and 5.

Unit Value Indices

The monthly unit value index measures monthly unit value trends relative to the annual levels in the preceding year using value weights relating to that year’s trade (Laspeyres index).

The annual index is compiled using value weights for both the current and previous year (Fisher index) to allow for change in the structure of trade in goods.

The monthly index series should be regarded as interim measures suitable for month-to-month comparisons within a given year. Previous monthly indices are revised when late returns are received.

When the annual unit value index is compiled, the monthly unit value indices are rescaled to make their average equal to the annual index.

The unit value index series has been rebased to 2010 from 1990. In the course of this rebasing, a detailed examination of the series was undertaken. This exercise has produced a number of modifications enabling production of a more robust series.

Seasonally Adjusted Series

Monthly exports, imports, trade surplus and the volume series for exports and imports have been seasonally adjusted using the US Bureau of the Census X-11 Variant of the Census Method 11 Seasonal Adjustment Program. In the main, monthly projections are based on series recalculated at the end of the previous year.

Methodology

There are methodological differences between the measurement of exports and imports in this release compared with Industrial Production, National Accounts and Balance of Payments statistics. This release records the movement of all goods over the frontier at the valuation placed on the goods at the time of crossing  the frontier. Industrial Production, National Accounts and Balance of Payments statistics take account of additional aspects of cross-frontier activities such as goods sent abroad for processing where goods cross the frontier without change of ownership. The CSO releases for those statistics provide more information on their methodology.

Services Exports and Imports

The quarterly Balance of Payments (BoP) statistics provide detail on Services exports and imports.

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