Both exports and imports fall in February – CSO

April 18, 2024

Ireland’s exports and imports fell in February, according to the latest figures from the Central Statistics Office.

Goods exports in the month were worth €15.9 billion on an unadjusted basis, down more than €700m from the same time last year.

Imports amounted to €10 billion, down more than €1.1 billion.

Today’s CSO figures show that the European Union remained the biggest market for Irish exports, though their value was down 4% year on year.

Exports to Britain were also down 5% in the month, but the sharpest drop was in the “rest of the world” category – which would include Asia and Africa.

Exports there were down nearly €500m, or 14%, year on year, the CSO said.

Today’s figures show that exports of Medical & Pharmaceutical Products increased by 15% to €6.451 billion in February from the same time last year – representing 40% of total exports.

Meanwhile, exports of Organic Chemicals fell by 38% to €2.269 billion and exports of Professional, Scientific & Controlling Apparatus grew by 7% to €830m.

They also reveal that imports of Organic Chemicals were down 27% to €1.135 billion, while imports of Other Transport Equipment – including aircraft – sank by 56% to €612m.

Imports of Mineral Fuels, Lubricants & Related Products decreased by 20% to €757m and imports of Office Machines & Automatic Data Processing Machines rose by 29% to €453m.

Commenting on today’s figures Carol Lynch, Partner in the BDO Customs and International Trade Services department said when the fall in the value of pharmaceuticals is stripped out, it points to quite a strong export performance by the Irish economy.

“Interestingly, the value of exports for the first two months of 2024 was 8% higher relative to the same period in 2023,” she said.

“Of particular interest with the implementation of the first tranche of UK border checks upon Irish food exports to Great Britain, the value of exports of Irish Agri-Food produce has remained relatively stable demonstrating that the Irish Agri-food sector has coped remarkably well with the increased trade friction.

“This is testament to the effort the sector has made in preparing for these checks,” she added.

Article Source – Both exports and imports fall in February – CSO – RTE

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