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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

September 2018

Seasonally adjusted
€ million
 ExportsImportsSurplus
April 201811,1947,0234,171
May 201811,7506,6205,130
June 201811,7988,0663,732
July 201811,8968,2173,679
August 201811,4287,8033,625
September 201811,4978,5342,963

Seasonally adjusted goods imports increased by 9% in September

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

The value of seasonally adjusted goods imports increased by €731 million (+9%) to €8,534 million in September 2018, according to preliminary figures.
 
The value of goods exports increased by €69 million (+1%) to €11,497 million on a seasonally adjusted basis. This means that there was a decrease of €662 million (-18%) in the seasonally adjusted trade surplus to €2,963 million in September 2018 (see Table 2).

Trade exports increased by 11% in September

The (unadjusted) value of goods exports for September 2018 was €11,343 million representing an increase of €1,155 million (+11%) when compared with September 2017. The value of goods exports for the period January to September 2018 was €103,405 million, an increase of €11,241 million (+12%), when compared with the first nine months of 2017.
 
The biggest category of goods exports in September 2018 was Medical and pharmaceutical products. Exports of these goods accounted for a third (33%) of total goods exports in September 2018. Exports of Medical and pharmaceutical products increased by €854 million (+29%) to €3,752 million in September 2018 when compared with September 2017.
 
Exports of Organic chemicals increased by €1,062 million (+79%) to €2,403 million in September 2018 and accounted for 21% of total goods exports.
 
Exports of Food and live animals fell by €110 million (-11%) to €913 million in September 2018, over the same comparative period.

Imports grew by 28% in September

The (unadjusted) value of goods imports for September 2018 was €8,121 million representing an increase of €1,780 million (+28%), when compared with September 2017. The value of goods imports for the period January to September 2018 was €65,402 million, an increase of €7,180 million (+12%), when compared with the first three quarters of 2017.
 
Imports of Medical and pharmaceutical products increased by €508 million (+82%) to €1,130 million compared with September 2017.
 
Imports of Other transport equipment, including aircraft increased by €919 million (+63%) to €2,369 million, and accounted for 29% of the total value of goods imports in September 2018.
 
Imports of Office machines and automatic data processing machines were valued at €416 million in September 2018, an increase of €167 million (+67%) over the same comparative period.
 
The value of goods imports for September 2018 excluding SITC 79 (Other transport equipment, including aircraft) was €5,752 million, an increase of €862 million (+18%) when compared with the corresponding September 2017 figure.

Exports to Great Britain fell by 5% in September

Exports to Great Britain accounted for 11% of total exports in September 2018. The most significant categories were Food and live animals (€352 million) and Chemicals and related products (€439 million).

Exports to Great Britain decreased by €65 million (-5%) to €1,299 million in September 2018, when compared with September 2017.  This was due to decreases in exports of Food and live animals and Machinery and transport equipment.
 
Exports to Great Britain for the period January to September 2018 were €10,383 million, which is a decrease of €540 million (-5%) compared with January to September 2017. 
 
Imports from Great Britain comprised 18% of total imports in September 2018. The largest categories of goods were Mineral fuels (€283 million), Food and live animals (€247 million), Machinery and Transport equipment (€241 million) and Chemicals and related products (€221 million).

Imports from Great Britain increased by €8 million (+0.6%) to €1,474 million in September 2018 over September 2017. There was an increase in the imports of Mineral fuels, offset by minor decreases in the imports of other products (see Table 5).

Imports from Great Britain for the period January to September 2018 were €13,139 million, an increase of €483 million (+4%) when compared with the first nine months of 2017.

Geographic breakdown of goods exports and imports

The EU accounted for €6,007 million (53%) of total exports in September 2018, of which €1,635 million went to Belgium and €848 million went to Germany. Exports to EU countries in September 2018 increased by €586 million (+11%) compared with September 2017.

The USA was the main non-EU destination accounting for €3,356 million (30%) of total exports in September 2018.

Imports from the EU were €4,971 million (61%) of total imports in September 2018, which is an increase of €1,073 million (+28%) over the same month in 2017.

The USA with €1,740 million (21%) and China with €435 million (5%) 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
2016119,29274,13145,162 125.6  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 127,81317,60010,214 119.5  158.0  100.7  89.4  112.6
 Quarter 230,30718,91911,388 129.0  159.5  102.0  94.8  107.6
 Quarter 330,36118,10612,254 126.5  152.5  103.6  94.2  110.1
 Quarter 430,81219,50611,306 127.6  162.8  104.6  94.7  110.5
2017Quarter 132,14119,22212,919 137.0  160.2  103.3  98.4  104.9
 Quarter 231,04121,1809,862 134.2  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 133,86120,33113,530 158.8  173.5  93.7  94.4  99.3
 Quarter 235,59821,81313,785 167.8  181.1  92.8  96.7  96.0
 Quarter 333,94623,25810,688 104.8  124.4  63.3  66.6  63.4
  
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
         
2016January8,8935,1363,757 120.9  142.6  95.6  87.0  110.0
 February8,5665,4733,093 105.0  144.4  106.0  91.6  115.8
 March10,3546,9913,364 132.6  187.0  100.6  89.7  112.1
 April10,0535,5854,468 125.8  144.6  104.1  93.4  111.5
 May9,3856,4042,982 123.6  164.7  99.0  94.2  105.0
 June10,8686,9303,938 137.7  169.3  102.8  96.7  106.4
 July9,4115,7313,680 120.4  144.2  101.9  96.2  106.0
 August10,4645,7154,750 130.8  146.1  103.4  93.1  111.1
 September10,4866,6613,824 128.2  167.1  105.6  93.4  113.1
 October10,1995,7004,499 129.3  142.6  103.1  95.9  107.5
 November11,2017,2363,965 140.6  183.9  104.1  94.4  110.3
 December9,4126,5702,842 113.0  162.0  106.6  93.7  113.8
         
20174January9,9045,8154,089 122.8  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
        
20184January12,1046,5385,566 166.2  161.4  95.5  93.9  101.8
 February10,3886,5263,862 144.0  169.9  95.2  94.7  100.6
 March11,3697,2674,102 166.1  189.3  90.3  94.6  95.5
 April11,0456,7354,309 162.9  167.3  89.5  99.2  90.2
 May11,7886,9774,811 164.4  172.9  93.0  92.6  100.5
 June12,7668,1014,665 176.0  203.0  95.8  98.3  97.4
 July11,0687,9213,147 151.8  189.3  96.3  103.1  93.3
 August11,5347,2164,319 162.7  184.0  93.6  96.6  96.8
 September11,3438,1213,222..........
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. September 2018 is based on current Intrastat response levels. See background notes.
.. Indices not yet available.
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 127,86616,66011,206 119.7  149.6
 Quarter 229,75919,07510,684 126.5  161.3
 Quarter 330,22119,04211,178 125.7  161.2
 Quarter 431,01019,26211,749 129.0  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 134,00520,55013,454 157.2  171.4
 Quarter 234,74221,71013,032 164.7  181.0
 Quarter 334,82124,55310,267 109.0  134.2
       
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
       
2016January9,4495,0844,365 127.0  145.3
 February8,9445,5203,424 108.7  143.8
 March9,4736,0563,417 123.3  159.6
 April9,8755,7124,163 125.3  148.7
 May9,6436,5033,140 124.8  167.8
 June10,2416,8603,381 129.4  167.4
 July9,2026,1883,014 118.3  156.8
 August 10,6985,9784,720 132.1  155.2
 September10,3216,8763,444 126.7  171.6
 October10,3565,7914,565 130.1  144.4
 November10,4206,8483,572 130.0  171.3
 December10,2346,6233,612 127.0  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
       
2018January12,5166,9335,583 169.0  165.2
 February11,0007,1063,894 149.7  182.3
 March10,4896,5123,977 152.9  166.8
 April11,1947,0234,171 168.8  177.2
 May11,7506,6205,130 161.4  167.4
 June11,7988,0663,732 163.8  198.5
 July11,8968,2173,679 165.2  198.8
 August11,4287,8033,625 161.9  203.7
 September11,4978,5342,963....
1 Based on seasonal patterns up to December 2017. Accordingly all values in this table may have been revised.
.. Indices not available yet.
Table 3 Goods Exports and Imports classified by commodity1
€million
SITC (Rev 4)ExportsImports
SepSepJan-SepJan-SepSepSepJan-SepJan-Sep
20172018201720182017201820172018
0Food and live animals1,0239138,4248,1476036325,2305,632
0Live animals other than animals of Division 03482327922316711890
1Meat and meat preparations3623572,8062,8948087712766
2Dairy products and birds' eggs2392331,8151,9256063583643
3Fish, crustaceans, molluscs and preparations thereof42404474262323218211
4Cereals and cereal preparations353030729496111803904
5Vegetables and fruit26252302501021109461,002
6Sugars, sugar preparations and honey14121191103432284272
7Coffee, tea, cocoa, spices and manufactures thereof37372822835952432432
8Feeding stuff for animals (excluding unmilled cereals)27292342497191600751
9Miscellaneous edible products and preparations1941271,9051,4946157533561
1Beverages and tobacco1311399791,01110284668630
11Beverages 1311399751,0107875597596
12Tobacco and tobacco manufactures00412497134
2Crude materials, inedible, except fuels1571621,3361,4627364676684
21Hides, skins and furskins, raw111098810000
22Oil seeds and oleaginous fruits 1076432525
23Crude rubber (including synthetic and reclaimed) 00111198
24Cork and wood13141151311515121130
25Pulp and waste paper745744624633
26Textile fibres and their wastes1110979911119
27Crude fertilisers and minerals (excluding coal, petroleum and precious stones)10151001111314124122
28Metalliferous ores and metal scrap97987678902117182183
29Crude animal and vegetable materials nes81195981212158173
3Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials921097538254135113,4624,247
32Coal, coke and briquettes7674801114143143
33Petroleum, petroleum products and related materials63805825723213792,7543,216
34Gas, natural and manufactured12111676100535770
35Electric current22218615741730118
4Animal and vegetable oils, fats and waxes7471492220202198
41Animal oils and fats636241111412
42Fixed vegetable fats and oils11871917173171
43Animal or vegetable fats and oils, processed; waxes0011221515
5Chemicals and related products5,1767,16550,73064,3041,3171,77813,27215,905
51Organic chemicals1,3402,40314,30419,9193102412,5682,461
52Inorganic chemicals11121021492330244250
53Dyeing, tanning and colouring materials35112841042018187165
54Medical and pharmaceutical products2,8983,75226,76734,5326221,1307,0409,682
55Essential oils; perfume materials; toilet and cleansing preparations5236075,8365,8961221191,079988
56Fertilisers (other than those of Division 27)00591935294373
57Plastics in primary forms30362673357577712754
58Plastics in non-primary forms37353723674951464495
59Chemical materials and products nes3013082,7942,9937677686738
6Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material1921921,7131,7534404363,7633,988
61Leather; leather manufactures nes; dressed furskins723320221514
62Rubber manufactures nes7760672426226248
63Cork and wood manufactures (excluding furniture)24252162372423217217
64Paper, paperboard and articles thereof15151181208176651672
65Textile yarn, fabrics, made-up articles and related products13121131204342356376
66Non-metallic mineral manufactures nes38383573534850412433
67Iron and steel15161291387066547613
68Non-ferrous metals8878864544421440
69Manufactures of metals nes6567610610105106918975
7Machinery and transport equipment1,9831,25416,19913,3072,4713,70823,26426,204
71Power generating machinery and equipment95735776625879762683
72Machinery specialised for particular industries6572536564881619761,358
73Metalworking machinery23262311990105
74General industrial machinery and equipment nes and parts nes1651761,4171,4191231441,1741,329
75Office machines and automatic data processing machines (including computers)3222762,5523,0922494162,4693,127
76Telecommunications and sound equipment1001287589291251371,1271,276
77Electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances nes and parts4783755,1783,7522022181,8922,018
78Road vehicles (including air-cushion vehicles)29252422521641762,5522,561
79Other transport equipment (including aircraft)7271274,9132,6151,4502,36912,22213,746
8Miscellaneous manufactured articles1,2861,29311,22011,6647087156,0056,162
81Prefab buildings; plumbing and electrical fixtures and fittings13101071082423193205
82Furniture and parts thereof; bedding, cushions etc13161391404042355394
83Travel goods, handbags and similar containers2219171111108107
84Articles of apparel; clothing accessories23202041531621681,3321,338
85Footwear3329283635307308
87Professional, scientific and controlling apparatus nes5265434,5854,6541431381,2751,339
88Photographic apparatus; optical goods; watches and clocks1121081,0181,0243331316302
89Miscellaneous manufactured articles nes5945915,1205,5392592672,1192,168
9Commodities and transactions not classified elsewhere81412833443238310364
Unclassified estimates259714575391611351,3701,389
           
Total10,18811,34392,165103,4056,3418,12158,22265,402
1 Trade statistics revised since 2000. September 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
SepSepJan-SepJan-SepSepSepJan-SepJan-Sep
20172018201720182017201820172018
Austria29272833281924214238
Belgium9341,6359,72813,513981271,0591,212
Bulgaria786576251933
Croatia3329361188
Cyprus22201900321
Czech Republic35482884202364287441
Denmark67704635573944323390
Estonia22171612914
Finland3322246227148124110
France4574053,8744,0458761,3837,6247,997
Germany9128487,8287,7176731,1105,2968,673
Great Britain1,3641,29910,92310,3831,4651,47412,65613,139
Greece5183234465474951
Hungary 202422524091890314
Italy 1922421,9332,5511081071,1731,221
Latvia674658333836
Lithuania221825585979
Luxembourg111687124392255
Malta42251131178
Netherlands5146814,3365,6512022131,7592,231
Northern Ireland1781621,4461,4851161101,0221,075
Poland131719417676857472460
Portugal35323563201920196160
Romania2520246255787563
Slovakia584159453339
Slovenia9105866322421
Spain2031871,9791,901901059771,172
Sweden65735676713534350535
EU country not specified212522678157923156496
Total EU5,4216,00746,97852,2473,8974,97134,12740,292
  of which United Kingdom1,5431,46112,36911,8691,5821,58413,67814,214
Euro-Zone33,4004,20931,10837,1992,1233,13418,66723,338
        
Australia6952669646896274
Brazil12231262582329148159
Canada791688031,0677336475399
China43413514,0563,6593934353,2393,829
India23272582484738523436
Japan2162211,6702,688731048851,092
Malaysia17131351522834241286
Mexico1151111,0951,0701726210257
Norway191729225988109866743
Russia41373643961748254436
Saudi Arabia36465394151167
Singapore5753528525938140343
South Africa2120171207998386
South Korea33465004585596714545
Switzerland2214034,4934,9733951427467
Taiwan25271862512540222250
Thailand1391311062532289316
Turkey32223954583230414392
USA2,9793,35625,36229,1421,1871,74012,42010,964
Other countries3462533,0503,0372121831,7611,930
Country unknown571803651,14186637162,098
Total Non-EU4,7675,33645,18651,1592,4443,15124,09525,110
     
Total10,18811,34392,165103,4056,3418,12158,22265,402
1 Trade statistics revised since 2000. September 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 SITCSepSepJan-SepJan-SepSepSepJan-SepJan-Sep
20172018201720182017201820172018
Great Britain1,3641,29910,92310,3831,4651,47412,65613,139
0Food and live animals3863522,8852,9242502472,1202,261
1Beverages and tobacco17201541492328208212
2Crude materials, inedible, except fuels34313003391615142155
3Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials35682733692582831,8712,246
4Animal and vegetable oils, fats and waxes211013443632
5Chemicals and related products4414393,7783,1962182212,3321,988
6Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material81837227581601661,3531,455
7Machinery and transport equipment2411671,6961,4862452412,2252,385
8Miscellaneous manufactured articles1011068698981971911,5691,619
9Commodities and transactions not classified elsewhere27322382509577801787
Other EU24,0574,70836,05541,8632,4323,49721,47127,153
0Food and live animals4033833,1743,2602512582,2532,392
1Beverages and tobacco37382822966045333308
2Crude materials, inedible, except fuels871017117992725237234
3Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials24211941973040284643
4Animal and vegetable oils, fats and waxes4358341413127126
5Chemicals and related products2,1053,10421,09327,3124841,1014,3598,899
6Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material81796687121631571,3651,427
7Machinery and transport equipment8204725,6064,6481,1731,63410,50411,040
8Miscellaneous manufactured articles4524563,9584,2031491491,3231,336
9Commodities and transactions not classified elsewhere43533114028075687749
USA2,9793,35625,36229,1421,1871,74012,42010,964
0Food and live animals43283802331924155184
1Beverages and tobacco5863406425221413
2Crude materials, inedible, except fuels233328323737
3Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials33191531041464155237
4Animal and vegetable oils, fats and waxes0-000001
5Chemicals and related products1,8752,48815,62321,3323972114,6292,536
6Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material15141791293332296313
7Machinery and transport equipment4682304,3272,5196141,3026,1546,636
8Miscellaneous manufactured articles4815074,2184,32910095902904
9Commodities and transactions not classified elsewhere4442435977102
China33413514,0563,6593934353,2393,829
0Food and live animals6755666546342732
1Beverages and tobacco10420000
2Crude materials, inedible, except fuels455642233228
3Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials001510000
4Animal and vegetable oils, fats and waxes00110000
5Chemicals and related products661096691,1243126224495
6Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material2222333938354355
7Machinery and transport equipment1371342,2161,4001792271,5821,863
8Miscellaneous manufactured articles63464214611341329691,008
9Commodities and transactions not classified elsewhere0000655147
Rest of World1,4471,62815,76918,3578649758,43610,316
0Food and live animals124951,3181,1868199675764
1Beverages and tobacco1918134138171111397
2Crude materials, inedible, except fuels29232362542518228231
3Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials001321041101241,1521,120
4Animal and vegetable oils, fats and waxes0021443939
5Chemicals and related products6891,0249,56811,3391872191,7281,987
6Manufactured goods classified chiefly by material14141221214542396438
7Machinery and transport equipment3172512,3553,2542603042,8004,279
8Miscellaneous manufactured articles1901781,7541,7721291481,2431,294
9Commodities and transactions not classified elsewhere6624148188776366
         
Total10,18811,34392,165103,4056,3418,12158,22265,402
1 Trade statistics revised since 2000. September 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 (August 2018 in this publication), -4 (May 2018) and -8 (January 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 September 2018 was 67%, covering an estimated 93% of the total value of intra-EU trade (these response rates will have increased by the next time data for September 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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