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Trade deficit widens in May, declines over five months amid decreased exports

Cyprus’ trade deficit for May 2024 has widened, driven by a decline in exports and a modest increase in imports, according to the latest provisional data from CYSTAT. The total trade deficit for the month stood at €693.4 million, compared to €578.2 million in May 2023.

Total imports of goods in May 2024 reached €1,031.8 million, marking a 3.2% increase from the €1,000.0 million recorded in May 2023. Imports from other EU Member States, totaled €611.4 million, up from €594.0 million in the same month of the previous year. Imports from third countries also recorded an increase, amounting to €420.4 million compared to €406.0 million in May 2023. The import figures for May 2024 included the transfer of economic ownership of vessels valued at €77.0 million, significantly higher than the €34.6 million recorded in May 2023.

On the other hand, exports in May 2024 declined by 19.8%, totaling €338.4 million, down from €421.8 million in May 2023. Exports to EU Member States fell to €89.8 million from €101.3 million, while exports to third countries decreased to €248.6 million from €320.5 million in the same period last year. The transfer of economic ownership of vessels also impacted the export figures, with a value of €68.6 million compared to €100.8 million in May 2023.

According to figures for January-May 2024 period total imports amounted to €4,655.7 million, a 14.4% decrease from the €5,435.4 million recorded in the same period of 2023. Total exports fell by 9.5%, reaching €1,534.5 million compared to €1,695.9 million in the first five months of 2023. This has resulted in a trade deficit of €3,121.2 million for January-May 2024, a decrease from the €3,739.6 million deficit in the corresponding period of the previous year.

At the same time final data for April 2024 presented a more positive picture, with total imports of goods increasing by 20.1% to €1,099.2 million compared to €915.5 million in April 2023. Exports of domestically produced goods also rose by 80.1% to €219.6 million from €121.9 million in April 2023.

This growth was driven by a substantial increase in the export of industrial products, which reached €204.5 million, and agricultural products, which grew to €14.0 million. However, exports of foreign products decreased by 34.9% to €131.1 million from €201.4 million in April 2023.

(Source: CNA)

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