Russia: Exports decelerate in April, trade balance surplus narrows
June 4, 2014
In April, exports expanded 2.5% over the same month last year, which marked a deterioration over the revised 5.4% expansion recorded in March (previously reported: +5.5% year-on-year).
Imports fell 8.7% in April, which was a stronger contraction than the revised 5.7% drop recorded in March (previously reported: -6.6% yoy). The trade surplus reached USD 18.0 billion in April (April 2013: USD 14.2 billion surplus). The 12-month sum of the trade surplus widened from March’s USD 183 billion to USD 187 billion in April.
The price for Ural oil, Russia’s key export commodity, picked up in the beginning of the year amid ongoing tensions between Russia and Ukraine. However, in recent weeks, oil prices have eased. On 4 June, the Ural oil barrel traded at USD 105.97, which was 2.4% lower than on the same day of the previous month and 4.3% higher than on the same day of last year. That said, this figure represents a drop of 2.6% since the beginning of the year.