Year-on-year, imports surged 9 percent to HKD 420.6 billion, after a 8.6 percent jump in the previous month. Purchases grew mainly from major suppliers, such as Malaysia (60.7 percent), Taiwan (30.3 percent), Korea (17.6 percent), Thailand (14.6 percent) and the US (9.8 percent). Conversely, a decrease was registered in the value of imports from Singapore (-5.7 percent).
By commodity, imports rose mostly for: electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances, and electrical parts thereof (15.4 percent); office machines and automatic data processing machines (9.1 percent) and petroleum, petroleum products and related materials (28.3 percent). However, a decline was reported in the value of imports of articles of apparel and clothing accessories (-3.8 percent).
Exports advanced 6 percent to HKD 360.7 billion, following a 7.8 percent increase in November. Sales to Asia as a whole grew 4.3 percent, in particular to India (66.6 percent), the Philippines (22.8 percent), Thailand (19.8 percent), Japan (10.8 percent), Malaysia (10.5 percent) and China (1.7 percent). On the other hand, falls were recorded in the values of total exports to Taiwan (-10.1 percent) and Singapore (-9.1 percent). Apart from destinations in Asia, gains were registered in the values of total exports to some major destinations in other regions, namely Germany (28.7 percent) and the US (11.5 percent). Meanwhile, a decrease was recorded in exports to the United Kingdom (-3.3 percent).
By commodity, shipments rose for: electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances, and electrical parts thereof (6.8 percent); non-metallic mineral manufactures (50.7 percent) and office machines and automatic data processing machines ( 9.8 percent). However, a decrease was registered in the value of total exports of telecommunications and sound recording and reproducing apparatus and equipment (-2.3 percent).
For 2017 as a whole, the trade shortfall widened to HKD 481.1 billion from HKD 420.1 billion, as purchases (8.7 percent) increased faster than sales (8 percent).