In August, the foreign trade turnover of Latvia amounted to EUR 2.31 billion, which at current prices was 4.3% less than a year ago, of which the exports value of goods dropped by 3.7% and imports value of goods – by 4.8%.
Latvia exported goods in the amount of EUR 1.07 billion, but imported – in the amount of EUR 1.23 billion. Compared to August 2019, foreign trade balance improved slightly, as exports in total foreign trade amount increased from 46.3% to 46.6%, according to data from the Central Statistical Bureau of Latvia.
During the eight months of this year foreign trade turnover of Latvia at current prices reached EUR 17.64 billion – EUR 1.3 billion or 6.8% less than in the corresponding period of the previous year. The exports value constituted EUR 8.18 billion (-EUR 271.8 million or 3.2%), whereas the imports value comprised EUR 9.46 billion (-EUR 1.02 billion or 9.8%).
Calendar and seasonally adjusted data showed that, compared to August 2019, in August 2020 the exports value at current prices went up by 0.5%, but the imports value dropped by 3%, whereas, compared to the previous month, the exports value went up by 3.7%, but the imports value went down by 1.5%.
Main changes in exports in August 2020, compared to August 2019, included the following: exports of machinery and mechanical appliances; electrical equipment up by EUR 17.6 million or 9.8%; exports of wood and articles of wood down by EUR 12.5 million or 6.9%; exports of vehicles and associated transport equipment down by EUR 11.2 million or 19.7%; exports of mineral products down by EUR 10.8 million or 21%; exports of base metals and articles of base metals down by EUR 5.5 million or 6.4%.
Main changes in imports in August, compared to August 2019, included the following: imports of machinery and mechanical appliances; electrical equipment up by EUR 29.4 million or 11.8%; imports of mineral products down by EUR 57.9 million or 37.2%; imports of vehicles and associated transport equipment down by EUR 27.8 million or 27.7%; imports of plastics and articles thereof down by EUR 6.3 million or 8.2%; imports of textiles and textile articles down by EUR 5.5 million or 10%.
In August, the main export partners of Latvia in trade with EU countries were Lithuania (17.5% of total exports), Estonia (12%), Germany (8.8%) and Sweden (5.2%), whereas the main import partners were Lithuania (20.3% of total imports), Poland (10.2%), Germany (9.8%) and Estonia (8.9%). Russia was the main partner in trade with third countries; its share in total Latvian exports in August accounted for 8.3%, whereas in imports – for 6.1%.
In August, compared to August 2019, share of the European Union countries in total exports value increased by 1.2%, but in imports value – fell by 0.2%. The share of CIS countries in exports fell by 1.2% and in imports – by 1.6%. Foreign trade balance of Latvia was positive with 114 partner countries, as exports value of goods exceeded imports value of goods. It was negative in trade with 44 countries. Rise of exports of miscellaneous grains, seeds and fruit; industrial or medicinal plants in August, compared to August 2019, was mostly affected by increase of exports of rape and colza seeds by EUR 14.3 million or 60.2%. Exports of cereals fell, as exports of wheat and meslin reduced by EUR 14.5 million or 20.7%. In turn, compared to July, exports of wheat and meslin increased significantly (by EUR 54 million), which was mostly exported to Saudi Arabia (EUR 12.9 million), Algeria (EUR 10.7 million) and Israel (EUR 10.2 million).
The rise in imports of electrical machinery and equipment in August, as compared to August 2019, was facilitated by an increase in imports of mobile telephones by EUR 12.7 million or 36.6%. In turn, reduction in imports of mineral fuels, mineral oils and products of their distillation was mostly influenced by decrease in imports of diesel oil by EUR 22.2 million or 36.1%. (BNN/Business World Magazine)