Portugal’s exports to China up 19 pct in Jan-Sept

Portuguese exports to China rose 19 percent year-on-year in the first nine months of 2014 to 595 million euros (US$740.3 million), show data released this week by Portugal’s National Statistics Institute (INE). That is up from 500 million euros recorded in the first nine months of 2013.

Imports of goods from China grew by 17.3 percent year-on-year during the period, to 1.22 billion euros.

The data however were mixed for the month of September. Portugal shipped goods worth 54 million euros to China in September this year, down 5.3 percent from a year earlier.

In contrast, imports from China in September rose 15.7 percent year-on-year to 155 million euros.

Growth in trade between Portugal and Portuguese-speaking African countries was stronger. Portugal bought goods worth 216 million euros from these African countries in September, up 96.4 percent from a year ago. Portugal’s exports to Portuguese-speaking African countries grew by 8.4 percent to 337 million euros in September.

Overall, Portuguese exports were up 3.7 percent in September 2014 from the prior year period, while imports grew by 5.6 percent.

In the first nine months of the year, exports increased by 1 percent year-on-year. Exports have been one of the main engines of economic recovery for Portugal the past year, but spending by consumers has been picking up in recent months, thus boosting imports.

Portugal’s trade balance deficit for the January to September period stood at 1.08 billion euros, according to official data.