Exports dropped 6.2 percent year-on-year to EUR 19.44 billion in August, dragged by lower sales of food, beverages and tobacco (-0.6 percent); chemicals (-1.6 percent); manufactured consumption goods (-4.3 percent); non-chemicals semi-manufactures (-19.8 percent); automotive sector (-12.8 percent); energy products (-17 percent) and raw materials (-9.6 percent). Meanwhile, sales rose for equipment goods (+0.8 percent); durable consumer goods (+2.2 percent) and other products (+9.2 percent).
Among major trading partners, sales declined to the Euro Area (-7.7 percent), of which France (-3.9 percent), Germany (-7 percent), Portugal (-5.3 percent) and Italy (-8 percent). On the other hand, sales increased to the US (+1.3 percent) and China (3.2 percent).
Imports fell at a softer 1.5 percent from a year earlier to EUR 23.42 billion, mainly due to lower purchases of energy products (-17 percent); manufactured consumption goods (-2 percent); non-chemicals semi-manufactures (-7.1 percent); raw materials (-8.6 percent) and durable consumer goods (-2.5 percent). By contrast, imports increased for equipment goods (+2.2 percent); chemicals (+0.2 percent); food, beverages and tobacco (+2.1 percent); automotive sector (+22.5 percent) and other products (+92.9 percent).
Among major trading partners, purchases decreased from the Euro Area (-1.6 percent), in particular France (-1.9 percent); Italy (-11.3 percent) and Portugal (-17.4 percent). Also, imports went down from China (-1 percent), but increased from Germany (+7.1 percent) the US (18.5 percent).
Considering the first eight months of the year, the country's trade shortfall widened to EUR 21.18 billion from EUR 20.89 billion in the corresponding period of 2018, as imports rose 1.2 percent to EUR 213.31 billion and exports went up 1.1 percent to EUR 192.13 billion.