The value of Irish exports decreased by almost 2.4 billion euros between October and November amid new signs of a slowdown in world trade.
The latest commercial figures from the Central Statistical Office (CSO) show that exports of goods decreased by 17 percent to € 11.9 billion in November due to a drop in exports of chemical and pharmaceutical products.
However, the OSC warned that the monthly figures may be volatile and that the November figure occurs after several strong months.
The value of exports of goods during the first 11 months of the year increased by 9 percent € 140.7 billion, compared to 2018.
Imports of goods also fell by € 1. 3 billion or 17 percent to € 6.4 billion in November as a result of declining aircraft imports.
This resulted in a seasonally adjusted trade surplus of 5.5 billion euros in November.
The monthly export figures were driven by the decrease in exports of organic chemicals and medical and pharmaceutical products, which decreased by 5% and 2%, respectively.
The state’s export trade is dominated by pharmaceutical products, which account for more than 60 percent of total merchandise exports due to the strong multinational pharmaceutical manufacturing base here.
Imports of transport equipment
On the other hand, imports of other transport equipment, including airplanes, decreased by more than 2,000 million euros or 75 percent to 689 million euros.
The European Union accounted for € 5.8 billion (46 percent) of total exports of goods in November, of which € 1.5 billion and € 778 million went to Germany and the Netherlands, respectively.
The United States was the main destination outside the EU, representing slightly less than € 4.1 billion (33 percent) of total exports.
The figures show that the Republic’s trade with the United Kingdom fell slightly in 2019. The value of Irish goods exports to our nearest neighbor decreased by 3 percent to € 12.5 billion in the first 11 months of 2019, driven primarily by the decline in exports of chemicals and related products, and live food and animals.