Seasonally adjusted exports decreased to €9,019 million from an upwardly revised €9,456 million in April, while imports rose to €5,046 million from an upwardly revised €4,856 million, preliminary figures showed.
Year-on-year, sales grew 8 percent, as exports of chemicals and related products increased by 11.9 percent, mainly boosted by higher medical and pharmaceutical products' shipments (+30 percent). Also exports of miscellaneous manufactured articles grew 16.4 percent, including professional, scientific and controlling apparatus nes (+26.4 percent). The EU accounted for 54 percent of total exports in May 2015 of which 14 percent went to Belgium while the USA was the main non-EU destination accounting for 26 percent of total exports.
Imports shrank 2 percent when compared to a year earlier, mainly due to lower purchases of mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials (-22.9 percent) and machinery and transport equipment (-8.3 percent). The EU accounted for 61 percent of imports during the month, with 29 percent of total imports coming from the UK. The USA (14 percent) and China (7 percent) were the main non-EU sources of imports.