Year-on-year, exports soared 12.3 percent to USD 35,210 million, the strongest gain for a February month since 2012. Non-oil sales, which accounted for more than 90 percent of total exports, increased 10.8 percent to USD 32,627 million. Shipments grew for manufactured products (10.5 percent), primarily steel products (21 percent); automotive products (17.9 percent); machinery and special equipment for diverse industries (12 percent) and professional and scientific equipment (9.9 percent). Meantime, sales also went up for mining products (6.7 percent) and agricultural goods (17.3 percent), namely fruit and edible fruit (36.3 percent); tomato (33.5 percent); pepper (32.6 percent); melon, watermelon and papaya (32.2 percent) and avocados (23.3 percent).
Oil exports advanced 36.6 percent to USD 2,583 million. Mexico sold 1.451 million barrels a day, above 1.217 million a year ago. Crude oil prices also were up to USD 56.21 a barrel, USD 11.50 more than in February of 2017.
Non-oil exports to the US, which represented more than 80 percent of total shipments, rose 8.2 percent, driven by exports of autos (11.7 percent) and other exports (6.4 percent). Sales to the rest of the world jumped 23.1 percent, boosted by a 54.6 percent climb in shipments of autos and 11 percent rise in other sales.
Imports grew at a softer 11.7 percent to USD 34,148 million. Oil purchases rose 28.9 percent while non-oil imports increased 9.7 percent with biggest gains recorded for capital goods (20.1 percent); consumer goods (12.1 percent) and intermediate goods (10.6 percent).
On a seasonally adjusted basis, exports rose 4 percent in February from January and imports went up 2 percent, thus shrinking the trade deficit to USD 451,2 million from USD 1,149 million.