Russia’s foreign trade surplus down by 9% y/y in Jan-Sep.

By bne IntelliNews November 25, 2013

Foreign trade surplus decreased by 9% y/y in Jan-Sep, the surplus amounting to USD 133.6bn, data in a report by RosStat shows. The decline rate of the surplus slowed down somewhat after 15% y/y decline seen in H1/13 and 15% y/y decline seen in Q1/13.

Exports in Jan-Sep declined by 1.3% y/y to USD 382.8bn, while imports went up by 3.4% y/y to USD 249.2bn. To compare, exports in 2012 made up USD 529.3bn increasing by weak 1.4% y/y, while imports increased by 3.6% y/y to USD 335.4bn.

Exports of fuels and energy sources as usual accounted for most of Russia’s exports in Jan-Sep (71% of total) posting 0.6% y/y growth (vs. 5.6% y/y decline seen in Jan-May). Out of that exports of crude oil amounted for 33.2% of total exports (down by 4.7% y/y) and exports of natural gas to 12.6% of total exports (up by 8.2% y/y). Exports of fuels oil and gas improved slightly in past three months, moderating the negative dynamics of exports and trade surplus overall. Exports of metals and metal products that accounted for 8% of Russia’s exports in Jan-Sep declined by 10.2% y/y.

In Jan-Sep, main imports were machinery, equipment and transport (48.6% of total imports, down by 1.1% y/y), followed by foods and agricultural products (12.9% of total imports, up by 4.4% y/y) and chemical products (15.8% of total, up by 4.8% y/y). Declining imports of machinery and equipment throughout 2013 confirm the data on stagnating capital investment in Russian industry.

Trade turnover with non-CIS in Jan-Sep gained 2% y/y to USD 534bn (86.5% of total trade turnover), out of which trade turnover with EU countries went up by 3% y/y to USD 306.4bn (49.7% of total turnover). Trade turnover with CIS countries was at USD 83bn (13.5% of total), down by 7.7% y/y.  

In 2012, foreign trade surplus growth went down to 2.2% y/y to USD 193.8bn. The surplus growth rate previously declined throughout 2012 and 2011: to compare, the surplus increased by 10.2% y/y in H1/12, 26% y/y in Q1/12, 19% y/y in H1/11, and 31% y/y in 2011.

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