News Releases

International Trade in Goods: April 2024

NR 104/2024
Release Date: 10 June 2024
Cut off Date: 1 June 2024

During April 2024, provisional figures for registered trade in goods in Malta are showing a deficit of €332.4 million as opposed to a deficit of €493.4 million in the corresponding month of 2023.
Birzebbuga,,Malta,-,May,,2021:,Harbor,With,Cranes,,Ships,And

Total Trade in Goods: April 2024

Data in this news release presents all international trade in goods registered up to the indicated cut-off date. Provisional data recorded a total trade in goods deficit of €332.4 million during April, compared to a deficit of €493.4 million in the corresponding month of 2023. Imports amounted to €661.6 million, while exports totalled €329.2 million. This represents a decline of €152.0 million in imports and an increase of €9.0 million in exports over the same month of the previous year (Table 1). The main decrease in imports was primarily due to Machinery and transport equipment (€143.3 million). On the exports side, the main increase was registered in Miscellaneous manufactured articles (€19.0 million), partly offset by a decrease in Machinery and transport equipment (€8.0 million) (Table 3).

 

Total Trade in Goods: January-April 2024

During the first four months of the year, the deficit narrowed by €52.7 million when compared to the corresponding period of 2023, reaching €1,179.1 million. Imports stood at €2,666.7 million whereas exports reached €1,487.6 million, representing increases of €25.0 million and €77.7 million, respectively (Table 1). Higher imports were mainly recorded in Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials (€100.2 million), and Chemicals (€35.0 million), partly offset by decreases in Machinery and transport equipment (€63.7 million), and Semi-manufactured goods (€58.3 million). On the exports side, the main increases were registered in Machinery and transport equipment (€100.4 million), and Mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials (€29.4 million), partly offset by decreases in Miscellaneous manufactured articles (€24.8 million), and Food (€23.7 million) (Table 3).

Chart 1. International Trade in Goods: Monthly

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Goods were imported mainly from the European Union (57.4 per cent) and Asia (22.4 per cent), while exports were mostly directed to the European Union (34.5 per cent) and North and Central America (12.7 per cent). The highest increase in imports was recorded from Italy (€89.3 million), while imports from the United Kingdom registered the largest drop (€66.2 million). Exports to the United States of America registered the highest increase (€138.0 million), while those to Germany experienced the largest decrease (€14.8 million) (Table 4).

Trade in Goods excluding specific chapters1: April 2024

In April, the deficit of trade in goods excluding specific chapters amounted to €196.0 million, compared to a deficit of €220.8 million recorded in the same month of 2023. Imports and exports amounted to €424.0 million and €228.0 million, respectively, thus representing a decrease of 4.3 per cent in imports and an increase of 2.6 per cent in exports over the corresponding month of the previous year (Table 1).

Trade in Goods excluding specific chapters1: January-April 2024

During the first four months of 2024, the deficit of trade in goods excluding specific chapters widened by €117.3 million when compared to the same period of 2023, reaching €846.7 million. Imports increased by 2.1 per cent, while exports decreased by 8.4 per cent, reaching €1,730.5 million and €883.8 million, respectively (Table 1).

Chart 2. Trade in Goods excluding specific chapters1 - Monthly

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Chart 3. Percentage change of Trade in Goods

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Chart 4. Percentage distribution of total Trade in Goods by major commodity group

April 2024

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Chart 5. Percentage distribution of Trade in Goods excluding specific chapters1 by continent/region

April 2024

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1 Data excluding Mineral fuels, oils and products (Chapter 27), Aircrafts/spacecrafts and parts thereof (Chapter 88) and Ships, boats and floating structures (Chapter 89). See methodological note 8.
Note: Totals may not add up due to rounding.

Methodological Notes

1. Figures presented in this news release are based on register data available as at the cut-off date printed on the front page of this release. These are provisional figures based on information provided by traders and customs declarations on a monthly basis. Regular revisions to monthly and annual trade data may be carried out on a regular basis or as deemed necessary. No estimations are included in these figures to compensate for late or non-response by traders or late documentation of customs declarations.
 
2. Data in this release are based on:

i. The Intrastat Supplementary Declaration that traders in merchandise goods must submit in respect of arrivals (imports) and dispatches (exports) of goods from and to the Member States of the European Union (EU) in compliance with Legal Notice 105 of 2008, and

ii. The Customs Declarations for imports from and exports to countries that are not Member States of the EU.

3. The Intrastat Supplementary Declaration for the collection of data on trade in goods between the Member States of the EU replaced the Customs Declaration as from 1 May 2004. The requirements of the Supplementary Declaration, which at EU level were introduced as from 1 January 1993, are similar in all the Member States of the EU.
 
4. As from May 2004, with the introduction of the Intrastat Supplementary Declaration as the source document for trade statistics, it was no longer possible to disaggregate total exports into domestic exports and re-exports.
 
5. The ‘Balance of Trade’ is the difference between a country’s exports and imports. A country has a trade deficit if it imports more than it exports; the opposite scenario signifies a trade surplus.
 
6. National concepts differ from the harmonised methodology used by Eurostat, leading to differences between figures in this release and those published by Eurostat. Malta uses the “General Trade” system for dissemination purposes in line with UN recommendations. On the other hand, monthly data sent to Eurostat for both Intra-EU and Extra-EU are compiled according to the “Special Trade” methodology. A more detailed explanation of these two concepts can be found in the “Statistical Concepts” link below (refer to methodological note 13).
 
7. i. The euro area (Trading Partners) includes Austria, Belgium, Croatia (from January 2023), Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Latvia (from January 2014), Lithuania (from January 2015), Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain.
 
ii. The EU (Trading Partners) includes Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia (from July 2013), Cyprus, Czech Republic (Czechia), Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden. As of 1 February 2020, the United Kingdom is no longer part of the EU. The transition period that was in place – during which nothing changed – ended on 31 December 2020.
 
For reference periods February 2020 onwards, monthly news releases having a country breakdown will carry EU data excluding the United Kingdom. Users are advised to use data with caution when making comparisons since this will result in discrepancies, unless United Kingdom information is removed from previous figures.
 
iii. As from 1 January 2021, following the Withdrawal Agreement (Brexit) between the United Kingdom and the EU, Northern Ireland is to be considered as part of the EU for International Trade purposes.
 
iv. EFTA (European Free Trade Association) countries comprise Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.
 
8. As from the publication relating to the January 2021 reference period, the format of the news release changed. The main enhancement was the reporting of statistics which exclude specific chapters, namely Mineral fuels, oils and products (Chapter 27), Aircrafts/spacecrafts and parts thereof (Chapter 88) and Ships, boats and floating structures (Chapter 89). These are categories which are dominated by one-off transactions that could weigh heavily on the overall headline figures. Therefore, while the official figures remain those for total trade, data excluding these specific chapters is, in many cases, more suitable to analyse underlying economic trends.
 
9. In April 2023, the Office launched an exercise aimed at enhancing the coverage, and thus reliability, of trade in goods data. This involved using an administrative source, in particular VAT data, to crosscheck existing data. Contact was made with traders, reminding them of their legal obligation to record intra-EU trade in the Intrastat system, which is resulting in the narrowing of data gaps. To provide users with consistent time series data, whenever possible, data extending back to 2016 is being requested. This process, which is still ongoing, is likely to lead to larger revisions than usual in the short term.
 
10. As from the reference period January 2021, data in Table 3 is based on the Standard International Trade Classification (SITC) Rev.4.
 
11. As from the reference period January 2021, the Caribbean and the Bahamas Islands are included under North and Central America.
 
12. The percentage change for the Balance of Trade between the current month (y) and the corresponding month of the previous year (x), is worked using the formula ((y-x)/abs(x))*100. A negative percentage change in the Balance of Trade means that it has widened (deteriorated), while a positive percentage change means that the Balance of Trade has narrowed (improved).
 
13. More information relating to this news release may be accessed at:
14. Statistics in this news release should be interpreted in the context of the COVID-19 situation.
 
15. The data contained in this release is subject to revision. For an updated time-series which includes past data, please refer to the Statistical Indicators for this domain. 
 

16. A detailed news release calendar is available online.

17. References to this news release are to be cited appropriately. For guidance on access and re-use of data please visit our dedicated webpage.

18. For further assistance send your request through our online request form.

 

International Trade in Goods: April 2024  

NR 104/2024
Release Date: 10 June 2024
Cut off Date: 1 June 2024

Birzebbuga,,Malta,-,May,,2021:,Harbor,With,Cranes,,Ships,And
  • In April 2024, Malta registered a trade deficit of €332.4 million.
  • During April 2024, a decrease of €152.0 million in imports was recorded, while exports increased by €9.0 million, over the same month of the previous year.
  • In the first four months of 2024, Malta’s trade imports from the European Union reached €1,531.0 million (57.4 per cent of total imports).
  • During January-April 2024, the main increase in imports was from Italy (€89.3 million) and main decrease was from the United Kingdom (€66.2 million).
  • In the first four months of 2024, the main increase in exports was recorded from the United States of America (€138.0 million) and main decrease was from Germany (€14.8 million).

International Trade in Goods: April 2024

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