Malta has registered a provisional trade deficit of €254.2 million in April 2021, a significant increase over the same month in 2020, when the trade deficit was at €157.4m
A National Statistics Office update released on Wednesday showed that imports during April amounted to €541.1m, while exports totalled €286.9m.
This represents an increase of €151.6m and €54.8m, respectively, over the same month of the previous year.
The rise in the value of imports was primarily due to machinery and transport equipment (€170.4m), partly offset by a decrease in mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials (€28.4).
On the exports side, the main increase was registered in chemicals (€32.3m).
During the first four months of the year, the total trade in goods deficit narrowed by €114.7m when compared to the corresponding period of 2020, reaching €651.1m.
Both imports and exports decreased by €248.5m and €133.7m, respectively, and amounted to €1,701.3m and €1,050.2m.
Lower imports were mainly recorded in mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials (€145.6m) and machinery and transport equipment (€103.2m). On the exports side, mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials (€121m) and machinery and transport equipment (€61.7m) accounted for the main declines, partly offset by an increase in chemicals (€77.9m).
Goods were imported mainly from the European Union (53.6 per cent) and Asia (20.2 per cent).
Similarly, exports were mostly directed to the European Union (45.5 per cent) and Asia (16.7 per cent).
The main increase and decrease in imports were registered from France (€45.4m) and Italy (€91.9m), respectively.
With respect to exports, the main increase was directed to Italy (€39.3m), whereas Germany reported the highest decrease (€73.1m).
In April, the deficit of trade in goods excluding specific chapters amounted to €67m, compared to a deficit of €79.1m recorded in the same month of 2020.
Imports and exports amounted to €283.6m and €216.6m, respectively, thus increasing by 13.5 per cent and 26.8 per cent over the corresponding month of the previous year.
During the first four months of 2021, the deficit of trade in goods excluding specific chapters narrowed by €28.2m when compared to the same period of 2020, reaching €305.7m. Both imports and exports increased by 1.5 per cent and 5.9 per cent, respectively, and amounted to €1,091m and €785.3 m.
The Retail Price Index has increased sharply since the beginning of the year
Progress has been made in discussions, but more needs to follow, says the Association
The FATF is expected to take the crucial vote on Wednesday