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International Trade Statistics: Trends in First Quarter 2014
Source: oecd.org
Source Date: Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Focus: Information Access, Citizens’ Service Delivery, E-Customs
Created: Jun 03, 2014

Total merchandise exports of the G7 and BRICS economies combined fell 2.7% in the first quarter of 2014 compared to the previous quarter (seasonally adjusted figures in current US dollars). Imports stagnated with only 0.1% growth over the same period (mainly due to continued imports of crude oil and fuels).

 

Exports fell sharply in China (by 7.3%) which may partly reflect the Chinese New Year but also the impact of a government crack-down on over-invoicing; imports fell more moderately (by 0.9%). In Japan, the recent import boom in the run up to the consumption tax hike in April seems to have dissipated, with imports rising by only 0.9%, while exports slowed sharply (by 3.5%). Overall this resulted in a record high trade deficit of 44.8 billion USD.

 

In the United States, exports fell by 1.3%, while imports increased by 0.8%. Canada witnessed the sharpest quarterly decrease in exports (2.9%) and imports (3.3%) since 2009. Merchandise trade also declined substantially in the United Kingdom (3.2% for imports and 4.3% for exports).

 

Among the G7 and BRICS countries, only Germany and Italy registered an increase in merchandise exports of 2.1% and 1.5%, respectively. Exports and imports were mainly flat in France.

 

In other BRICS countries merchandise trade also contracted. In Brazil, exports declined 5.8% and imports increased by 1.9% while in Russia exports and imports declined by 2.9% and 2.8% respectively. India also witnessed a decrease in trade (3.0% for exports and 0.9% for imports), as did South Africa (4.3% for exports and 1.5% for imports).

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