Import/Export - pexels

During February 2024, Malta registered a total trade in goods deficit – when a country’s imports of goods exceed its exports – of €175 million. This marks a stark decrease from the corresponding month of 2023 as the trade in goods deficit at the time was registered at €249.1 million.

These figures were published by the National Statistics Office (NSO) on Tuesday.

In total, imports amounted to €628 million while exports totalled €453 million, representing increases over the same month of the previous year in both imports and exports of €39.9 million and €114 million respectively.

The main increase in imports was attributed to machinery and transport equipment totalling €26.3 million. Meanwhile, in terms of export the main increase was also noted in machinery and transport equipment (€131.6 million), partly offset by decreases in mineral fuels, lubricants, and related materials (€12.4 million) as well as miscellaneous manufactured articles (€6.3 million).

During the first two months of the year, the deficit also narrowed by €52.2 million when compared to the corresponding period of 2023 reaching €436.3 million. Imports stood at €1,267.7 million while exports reached €798.4 million registering increases of €21.6 million and €73.8 million respectively.

During January and February 2024, higher imports were registered in miscellaneous manufactured goods at €9.4 million, machinery and transport equipment at €8.8 million and chemicals (€8.5 million). These were partly offset by a decrease in semi-manufactured goods (€14.5 million).

During the period, exports of machinery and transport equipment reached a total of €117.9 million.

The majority of the imported goods, 57 per cent, came from the European Union (EU). This was followed by imports from Asia, accounting for 23.2 per cent of the total.

Interestingly, while most exports also went to countries in the EU (29 per cent), Malta’s second most popular areas to export to were North and Central America (19.8 per cent).

The NSO explained that the highest increase in imports during the two-month period was recorded from Turkey €39.4 million. Notably, the biggest registered drop in imports was from the United Kingdom at €77.1 million.

Meanwhile, “exports to the United States of America registered the highest increase (€133 million) while those to South Korea experienced the largest decrease (€8 million).”

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