Seasonally adjusted exports declined by €624 million to €9,559 million in January from €10,183 million in December while imports dropped by a faster €1,729 million to €4,578 million from €6,307 million, preliminary figures showed.
Year-on-year, the non-seasonally adjusted value of exports grew €706 million or 9 percent to €8,996 million, boosted by higher sales of medical and pharmaceutical products (+18 percent); office machines and automatic data processing machines (+78 percent) and food and live animals (+8 percent). The EU accounted for €5,049 million or 56 percent of total goods exports of which €1,439 million went to Belgium and €985 million to the UK. The US was the main non-EU destination accounting for €2,238 million or 25 percent of total exports.
Meanwhile, imports went down by €615 million or 12 percent to €4,625 million, mainly due to lower purchases of organic chemicals (-45 percent) and petroleum (-53 percent); while imports of road vehicles rose by 21 percent. The EU accounted for €2,852 million or 62 percent of the value of goods imports, with €1,173 million of total imports coming from the UK. The US with €519 million or 11 percent and China with €315 million or 7 percent were the main non-EU sources of imports.