Exports remained stable at EUR 41.520 billion in March, as higher sales of basic metals and metal products (4 percent); textiles, clothing and leather (5.3 percent) and food, beverages & tobacco (3.7 percent) where offset by lower shipments of machinery and equipment (-1.7 percent) and transport equipment (-11.2 percent).
Exports rose mostly to France (3.1 percent); the UK (23 percent); Switzerland (17.3 percent); Spain (0.9 percent); Belgium (7.6 percent) and OPEC (1.5 percent). On the other hand, exports fell to the US (-11.1 percent); Germany (-2.5 percent); Poland (-5.5 percent) and the Netherlands (-5.1 percent).
Imports decreased 0.3 percent year-on-year to EUR 36.895 billion, dragged by lower purchases of transport equipment (-3.3 percent); basic metals and metal products (-2 percent); machinery and equipment (-2.1 percent) and food, beverages and tobacco (-2.8 percent); while import rose for chemicals and chemical products (0.7 percent); computers, electronic and optical devices (1.8 percent) and textiles, clothing and leather (1.6 percent).
Imports dropped mainly from Germany (-2.1 percent); France (-2 percent); China (-1.4 percent); Russia (-12 percent) and OPEC (-9.2 percent). By contrast, imports advanced from the United States (11.5 percent); the Netherlands (5.6 percent) and Spain (4.8 percent).
With European Union countries, the country's trade surplus jumped to EUR 1.220 billion from EUR 0.692 billion in March of 2018.
Considering the first quarter of the year, Italy’s trade surplus widened to EUR 8.189 billion from EUR 7.532 billion in the same period of 2018, as exports climbed 2 percent to EUR 114.736 billion and imports went up at a softer 1.5 percent to EUR 106.547 billion.