Exports continued to decrease in September

news release no 136

According to Statistics Estonia, in September 2019, compared to September 2018, the exports of goods decreased by 3% and imports increased by 3%. In the third quarter, exports decreased by 2%, having increased in the first two quarters.

In September, Estonia’s exports of goods amounted to 1.19 billion euros and imports to 1.36 billion euros at current prices. The trade deficit was 157 million euros, which is 73 million euros more than in September 2018.

The top destination countries of Estonia’s exports were Finland (17% of total exports), Sweden (10%) and Latvia (9%). The biggest decrease occurred in exports to USA (down 58 million euros) and Singapore (down by 32 million euros), while exports to Denmark increased (up by 21 million euros). Exports of electrical equipment decreased to the USA; exports of mineral products decreased to Singapore, but increased to Denmark.

The biggest exports from Estonia were electrical equipment, mineral products, agricultural products and food preparations (each 12% of Estonia’s total exports). Nevertheless, the greatest impact on the decline in exports came from mineral products (down by 66 million euros) and electrical equipment (down by 55 million euros). Exports increased the most for agricultural products and food preparations (up by 49 million euros).

Goods of Estonian origin accounted for 72% of the total exports of goods. Their exports decreased by 2% and re-exports by 5% compared to September 2018. This was due to the decrease in exports of electrical equipment (communication equipment) and mineral products (oil, electricity). The biggest increase occurred in exports of agricultural products and food preparations (wheat, barley).

The main countries of consignment were Finland (13% of total imports), Germany and Lithuania (both 10%). Imports increased the most from Latvia (up by 19 million euros), Germany (up by 18 million euros) and USA (up by 14 million euros). The biggest increases were in imports of mineral products from Latvia (motor spirit), transport equipment (passenger cars) from Germany and electrical equipment from the USA (parts of communication equipment). Imports decreased the most from Russia (down by 31million euros) mainly on account of mineral products.

The main commodities imported to Estonia were electrical equipment and mineral products (both 12% of total imports) and mechanical appliances (11%). The biggest increase occurred in the imports of agricultural products and food preparations, and raw materials and products of chemical industry (both up by 24 million euros) and transport equipment (up by 21 million euros). The imports of mineral products (down by 49 million euros) and electrical equipment (down by 14 million euros) decreased the most.

In the third quarter of 2019, exports of goods from Estonia amounted to 3.5 billion euros and imports to Estonia nearly 4 billion euros. The trade deficit was 458 million euros in the third quarter, which is by 86 million euros more than in the third quarter of 2018. In the third quarter, Estonia exported goods to 162 countries and imported goods from 114 countries. During the nine months this year, the exports of goods increased 2% and imports 1% compared to the same period last year.

Estonia’s foreign trade by month, 2018–2019
Month Exports, million euros Imports, million euros Balance, million euros
2018 2019 change, % 2018 2019 change, % 2018 2019
1st–3rd quarter TOTAL 10 605 10 831 2 11 933 12 021 1 ‒1 328 ‒1 190
1st quarter 3 296 3 558 8 3 801 3 932 3 ‒505 ‒374
January 1 035 1 158 12 1 254 1 278 2 ‒219 ‒121
February 1 118 1 163 4 1 203 1 250 4 ‒85 ‒87
March 1 143 1 238 8 1 344 1 404 4 ‒201 ‒166
2nd quarter 3 702 3 748 1 4 153 4 106 ‒1 ‒452 ‒358
April 1 195 1 238 4 1 342 1 389 4 ‒147 ‒151
May 1 238 1 336 8 1 407 1 434 2 ‒169 ‒98
June 1 269 1 173 ‒8 1 404 1 283 ‒9 ‒135 ‒109
3rd quarter 3 608 3 526 ‒2 3 979 3 984 0 ‒372 ‒458
July 1 193 1 175 ‒2 1 319 1 378 5 ‒126 ‒203
August 1 184 1 152 ‒3 1 345 1 249 ‒7 ‒162 ‒97
September 1 231 1 199 ‒3 1 315 1 356 3 ‒84 ‒157
Main foreign trade partners of Estonia, September 2019
Country of destination, group of countries Exports, million euros Share, % Change on same month of previous year, % Country of consignment, group of countries Imports, million euros Share, % Change on same month of previous year, %
TOTAL 1 199 100 ‒3 TOTAL 1 356 100 3
EU-28 863 72 6 EU-28 1 080 80 5
Euro area 19 592 49 5 Euro area 19 778 57 8
Non-EU 336 28 ‒20 Non-EU 277 20 ‒2
1. Finland 203 17 8 1. Finland 175 13 ‒1
2. Sweden 118 10 ‒10 2. Germany 142 10 15
3. Latvia 106 9 ‒12 3. Lithuania 138 10 2
4. Lithuania 78 7 19 4. Latvia 126 9 18
5. USA 69 6 ‒45 5. Sweden 116 9 ‒11
6. Russia 69 6 4 6. Russia 112 8 ‒21
7. Germany 67 6 ‒12 7. Poland 86 6 6
8. Denmark 53 4 63 8. Netherlands 57 4 9
9. Norway 46 4 5 9. China 43 3 ‒11
Exports and imports by commodity section, September 2019
Commodity section (chapter) by Combined Nomenclature (CN) Exports Imports Balance, million euros
million euros share, % change compared to same period of previous year, % million euros share,% change compared to same period of previous year, %
TOTAL 1 199 100 ‒3 1 356 100 3 ‒157
Agricultural products and food preparations (I–IV) 138 12 55 141 10 21 ‒3
Mineral products (V) 143 12 ‒32 164 12 ‒23 ‒20
Raw materials and products of chemical industry (VI) 68 6 7 131 10 22 ‒64
Articles of plastics and rubber (VII) 39 3 2 76 6 6 ‒38
Wood and articles of wood (IX) 130 11 0 47 3 3 83
Paper and articles thereof (X) 26 2 ‒6 25 2 21 1
Textiles and textile articles (XI) 34 3 ‒3 65 5 4 ‒30
Base metals and articles of base metal (XV) 88 7 ‒16 122 9 ‒4 ‒34
Mechanical appliances (84) 113 9 18 145 11 7 ‒33
Electrical equipment (85) 143 12 ‒28 164 12 ‒8 ‒21
Transport equipment (XVII) 83 7 28 140 10 18 ‒56
Optical, measuring, precision instruments (XVIII) 38 3 21 31 2 12 8
Miscellaneous manufactured articles (XX) 103 9 4 37 3 9 66
Other 54 4 17 70 5 19 ‒17

The statistics are based on the questionnaires “Intrastat” and “Exports (sale of fish and crustaceans in foreign waters and ports)”, the due dates of which were, respectively, 14 and 15 October 2019, and on the customs declaration data of the Estonian Tax and Customs Board, which were sent to Statistics Estonia on 21 October 2019. Statistics Estonia published the monthly summary of foreign trade in 14 working days. In the case of the statistical activity “Foreign trade”, the main representative of public interest is the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications, commissioned by whom Statistics Estonia collects and analyses the data necessary for conducting the statistical activity.

For further information:

Evelin Puura
Leading Analyst
Enterprise and Agricultural Statistics Department
Statistics Estonia
Tel +372 625 9259

More detailed data have been published in the statistical database and pre-defined tables. Due to rounding, the sum of rows in some tables July differ from the sum total of the column. Visualized data of Estonia’s foreign trade can be viewed in Statistics Estonia’s application.