Exports increase 1.9%, imports fall 1.6% in February

Export value of goods at current prices increased was LVL 538.6 million this past February - 1.9 percent or LVL 9.8 million more than in January, whereas import value of goods was LVL 644.7 million - 1.6 percent or LVL 10.8 million less than in January, according to the Central Statistical Bureau's data.

Compared to February 2012, Latvia's exports have increased 9.6 percent, whereas imports decreased 0.6 percent.

Latvia's foreign trade balance improved in February, with the value of exports increasing to 45.5 percent, up from 44.7 percent from this past January.

In February as compared to this past January, exports of machinery and mechanical appliances; electrical equipment increased LVL 10.3 million or 13.7 percent. Exports of vegetable products increased LVL 7.7 million or 25.6 percent, whereas exports of food products grew LVL 4.1 million or 10 percent.

On the other hand, imports of products of the chemical and allied industries grew LVL 7.7 million or 12.8 percent, imports of footwear and haberdashery rose LVL 3.5 million or 84.4 percent, and imports of mineral products dropped LVL 17.5 million or 12.8 percent.

Exports of basic metals and articles of basic metals in February, dropped LVL 9.3 million or 11.7 percent from January: export of basic metals to Algeria fell LVL 4.1 million or 27.8 percent and to Turkey LVL 3.6 million or 38 percent. In turn, import of basic metals and articles of basic metals from Russia reduced by LVL 7.7 million or 10.5 percent, from Netherlands - by LVL 3.2 million or 14.3 percent, from Finland - LVL 1.2 million or 60.2 percent.

This past February, exports to the European Union member states comprised 71 percent of Latvia's total exports, followed by the exports to CIS countries (13.7 percent). The main exports partners were Lithuania (15.7 percent of total exports), Estonia (13.7 percent), Russia (9.8 percent), Germany (8.9 percent) and Poland (5.8 percent).

Imports from the European Union countries had the most significant share in Latvia's total imports - 74.4 percent, followed by imports from CIS countries with 17.7 percent. The main import partners were Lithuania (17.2 percent of total imports), Russia (12.1 percent), Germany (10.8 percent), Poland (9.5 percent) and Estonia (7.4 percent).