Argentina: Trade surplus narrows in December amid flat export growth
Exports ticked up a marginal 0.7% in year-on-year terms in December, following November’s much stronger 10.1% increase. December’s outturn was the result of higher exported quantities, while prices continued to fall. The print was the result of higher exports of manufactured products of agricultural origin and of fuels and energy more than offsetting lower sales of manufactured products of industrial origin and of primary products. In terms of export markets, December’s print mainly resulted from rising in overseas shipments to China, Chile and Indonesia more than offsetting declining exports to Brazil and the U.S.
Imports plummeted 20.0% annually in December, a somewhat softer drop than November’s 21.9% slump. Significant contractions in the imports of passenger motor vehicles, fuels and lubricants, and intermediate goods drove November’s downturn.
Meanwhile, the trade balance surplus widened from USD 2.5 billion in November to USD 2.2 billion in December (December 2018: USD 1.4 billion surplus). Therefore, the 12-month rolling trade balance rose from a USD 15.1 billion surplus in November to a USD 15.9 billion surplus in December (December 2018: USD 3.7 billion shortfall), marking the best result since February 2010.