Japan Trade Balance May 2022


Japan: Merchandise exports grow at a stronger pace in May

June 16, 2022

Yen-denominated merchandise exports rose 15.8% over the same month last year in May, following April’s 12.5% upturn. Meanwhile, merchandise imports shot up 48.9% in annual terms in May (April: +28.3% yoy).

As a result, the merchandise trade deficit rose from the previous month, to JPY 2.4 trillion in May (April 2022: JPY 0.8 trillion; May 2021: JPY 0.2 trillion). Lastly, the trend deteriorated, with the 12-month trailing merchandise trade balance recording a JPY 8.6 trillion deficit in May, compared to the USD 6.5 billion deficit in April.

Analysts at EIU commented on the trade outlook:

“We have already factored in a substantial goods trade deficit in our 2022 forecast as a result of elevated global energy and foods prices; further softening in export orders constitutes a downside risk to our forecast and would lead us to expect a wider trade deficit for this year, which will add to the depreciatory pressure on the yen.”

Our panelists forecast that exports will increase 5.2% in 2022 and imports will increase 12.8%, bringing the trade balance to a deficit of USD 40.3 billion. In 2023, our panelists expect exports to expand 5.5% and imports to expand 3.4%, prompting the trade balance to log a deficit of USD 25.5 billion.


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Japan Trade Balance Chart

Japan Trade12m May 2022

Note: 12-month sum of trade balance in USD billion and annual variation of the 12-month sum of exports and imports in %.
Source: Ministry of Finance and FocusEconomics calculations.

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