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  • Japan August exports down 14.8 percent amid pandemic

Japan August exports down 14.8 percent amid pandemic

It remains to be seen whether exports are on a recovery trend or just showing some rebounds, a ministry official said. (AFP)
It remains to be seen whether exports are on a recovery trend or just showing some rebounds, a ministry official said. (AFP)
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16 Sep 2020 01:09:32 GMT9
16 Sep 2020 01:09:32 GMT9

TOKYO: Japan’s exports in August slid 14.8 percent from a year earlier to 5,232.7 billion yen amid the lingering coronavirus epidemic, a preliminary Ministry of Finance report showed on Wednesday.

The country continued to see a double-digit percentage fall in exports, although the pace of decline is on a slowing trend.

Exports to China, meanwhile, increased for the second straight month.

In August, Japan logged a customs-cleared trade surplus of 248.3 billion yen, compared with the year-before deficit of 152.2 billion yen.

The result came against the median forecast of a deficit of 14.1 billion yen in a Jiji Press poll of 18 research institutes.

Imports dropped 20.8 percent to 4,984.4 billion yen, reflecting a sharp fall in those of crude oil, liquefied natural gas and other energy-related items.

Exports were down for 21 months in a row. The August fall was milder than 28.3 percent in May, 26.2 percent in June and 19.2 percent in July.

It remains to be seen whether exports are on a recovery trend or just showing some rebounds, a ministry official said.

By category, automotive exports were down 19.4 percent, mineral fuel exports down 68.8 percent, and ship exports down 57.3 percent.

By trading partner, Japan’s exports to the United States dropped 21.3 percent to 936.9 billion yen and those to the European Union shrank 19.2 percent to 476.3 billion yen.

Meanwhile, shipments to China grew 5.1 percent to 1,261.6 billion yen, with those of semiconductor manufacturing equipment up 35.6 percent and those of nonferrous metals up 81.4 percent.

Japan ran a trade surplus with the United States of 373.1 billion yen, down 20.3 percent, while incurring a trade deficit with mainland China of 57.6 billion yen, smaller than 219 billion yen a year before.

JIJI Press

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