Exports of goods recovered from the spring coronavirus pandemic and remained at approximately the same level in June as in June 2019, according to the state agency Statistics Estonia, though imports fell by 8%. Wood and metal industries were the main driver for the recovery, the agency said.
When taken as a whole for the second quarter of 2020, exports fell by 15% YoY, however. Imports fell by 18%.
Evelin Puura, leading analyst at Statistics Estonia, said: “The main contributors to the recovery of exports were wood and metal industries. In Q2 as a whole, the main impact on trade came from decreased exports and imports of transport equipment and mineral products. By country, exports decreased the most to the Netherlands and the U.S. and imports dropped the most from Sweden and Lithuania.”
Exports and imports both stood at EUR 1.2 billion at current prices in June. Trade deficit fell by EUR 97 million, to EUR 11 million between June 2019 and June 2020.
Top export destinations were Finland, Sweden and Latvia, with Australia and Saudi Arabia seeing the highest growth (EUR 41 million and EUR 22 million respectively), principally driven by mineral product exports including fuel and oil.
Exports fell the most to the U.S. (EUR 42 million fall, mostly of electrical equipment) and Denmark (EUR 34 million, primarily of shale oil), the agency said
Electrical equipment, mineral products and timber and wooden products were the largest component of exports; timber, wood and articles of wood, along with metals and metal products, rose by EUR 10 million, Statistics Estonia says.
Transport equipment saw the largest fall, of EUR 30 million.
Goods of Estonian origin made up 71% of total exports, though these fell by 2%, primarily with Estonian-made fuels. Re-exports rose by 3 % over the same period.
Imports fell the most from Sweden (EUR 37 million decline, especially electrical and transport equipment) and Lithuania (down EUR 34 million, primarily with mineral products).
Imports from China saw the biggest growth at EUR 19 million, driven by consignments of personal protective equipment (PPE) necessitated by the virus, as well as by electrical goods.
The main commodities imported to Estonia were electrical equipment, agricultural products and food preparations, mineral products and mechanical appliances. The biggest fall occurred in the imports of mineral products and transport equipment, with the largest rise seen in the imports of precious metals, Statistics Estonia said. (ERR/Business World Magazine)