Japan Trade Balance June 2021


Japan: Exports grow at rapid albeit softer rate in June

July 21, 2021

Yen-denominated merchandise exports jumped 48.6% annually in June, hot on the heels of May’s 49.6% upturn, which had marked the strongest increase in over 30 years. Meanwhile, imports jumped 32.7% on an annual basis in June, accelerating from May’s 27.9% increases and marking the best result since May 2010. Both of June’s readings were aided by a healthy base effect, with June 2020 having coincided with a sharp pandemic-induced decline in trade volumes.

As a result, the merchandise trade balance improved, recording a JPY 0.4 trillion surplus in June (May 2021: JPY 0.2 trillion deficit; June 2020: JPY 0.3 billion deficit). Lastly, the trend pointed up, with the 12-month trailing merchandise trade balance recording a JPY 3.8 trillion surplus in June, compared to the USD 3.2 billion surfeit in May.

Regarding the outlook for the external sector, analysts at Nomura commented:

“Japan's real exports have already recovered to more or less the pre-pandemic level (2019 average), but there is still room for exports to recover as the level is still low when viewed in relation to real GDP levels in its major trading partners, namely the US, China, and EU. We expect real export growth to accelerate again from 2021 H2.”

Our panelists forecast that exports will increase 14.9% in 2021 and imports will increase 14.3%, bringing the trade balance to a surplus of USD 33.8 billion. In 2022, our panelists expect exports to expand 7.1% and imports to expand 7.1%, pushing the trade surplus to USD 36.6 billion.

Author:, Economist

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Japan Trade Balance Chart

Japan Trade12m June 2021 0

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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