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Shrinking exports mean 11pc fall in trade surplus

Preliminary figures from the CSO show that the slowdown on mainland Europe could be beginning to hit Irish exports.

THE SLOWDOWN IN the economies of mainland European countries may be beginning to have an impact on the Irish exporting sector, new figures have suggested.

Preliminary figures published by the Central Statistics Office show that the value of Irish exports fell by almost 4.5 per cent in the month of October, from just over €8 billion in September to €7.652 billion in October.

At the same time, the value of imports rose by just under €100 million in October, to €3.937 billion.

Overall, the trade surplus – the excess of exports over imports – fell by 11 per cent over the course of the month.

The preliminary surplus for October stood at €3.715 billion, down from €4.172 billion in October.

When seasonal adjustments are removed, the drop in the trade surplus is even more stark – falling from €4.37 billion to €3.64 billion, a drop of some 16.7 per cent.

While September’s figures were particularly strong – with exports exceeding the €8 billion mark for only the second time this year – the fall in exports could hint that the struggling economies on the continent are beginning to have an impact on Irish exporters.

The CSO’s figures do not yet offer a country-by-country breakdown of the areas to which Ireland has sent exports in October.

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