Malta’s trade deficit drops to €117m in December

(source: Unsplash/Ali Yahya)

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Malta registered a trade deficit of €117.0m in December 2018, down by €2.9m from €119.9m recorded in the same month a year earlier, according to preliminary figures published by Malta’s National Statistics Office (NSO).

The provisional data published by the NSO come as of 5 February. NSO figures reveal that both imports and exports decreased by €113.6m and €110.6m, respectively.

The statistics office finds that the imports decrease was chiefly driven by machinery and transport equipment (€63.9m) and mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials (€46.4m), while the exports figures dropped due to mineral fuels, lubricants and associated materials (€121.4m) and machinery and transport equipment (€42.6m).

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As far as the whole year is considered, NSO figures reveal that the trade deficit widened by €403.4m in 2018, as compared to the preceding year, totalling €2.858bn. For the whole year of 2018, both imports and exports dropped by €5.4m and €408.7m, respectively.

Imports were chiefly affected by a drop in machinery and transport equipment by €280.5m, which was partly outweighed by increases of €126.6m in mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials, €67.2m in chemicals, €41.7m in semi-manufactured goods and €32.1 million in miscellaneous manufactured articles, according to the NSO report. Exports decreased mainly due to dropping mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials by €427.2m.

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Trade imports arriving from the European Union constituted 65.8% of the total, €4.0257bn, in 2018, increasing by €642m as compared to the preceding year.

The full report including charts and visual representation of data is available for download at the website of NSO.