Year-on-year, imports jumped by 25.4 percent to USD 23.08 billion, driven by higher purchases of intermediate goods (up 27.4 percent), capital goods (up 20.2 percent), and consumption goods (up 18.3 percent). Among major trading partners, imports grew from Germany (20.8 percent), China (14 percent), Russia (39.3 percent), the US (43.7 percent), Italy (20.6 percent) and France (7.6 percent).
Exports rose at a slower 8.6 percent to USD 13.88 billion, boosted by higher sales of manufacturing (up 8.7 percent) and mining and quarrying (up 25.4 percent). Among major trading partners, exports rose to Germany (10.2 percent), the UK (8 percent), Italy (12.6 percent), the US (13.5 percent), and France (11.1 percent), but fell to Iraq (-2.9 percent).
Considering full 2017, the trade deficit went up by 36.8 percent to USD 76.74 billion from USD 56.09 billion in 2016, as imports rose 17.7 percent to USD 233.79 billion and exports increased 10.2 percent to USD 157.06 billion.