Biggest decrease in foreign trade in 11 years
According to Statistics Estonia, in April 2020, compared to April 2019, the exports of goods decreased by 17% and imports by 22%. The greater decrease in imports offset the balance of trade.
Estonia’s exports of goods amounted to 1.02 billion euros and imports to 1.09 billion euros at current prices. The trade deficit was 61 million euros; it decreased by 89 million euros compared to April 2019.
According to Evelin Puura, leading analyst at Statistics Estonia, the last time trade fell this much was 11 years ago, in 2009. “In April, trade decreased in most commodity sections, but exports and imports increased for products associated with COVID-19, such as disinfection products and pharmaceuticals,” explained Puura.
In April, the top destination country of Estonia’s exports was Finland, followed by Sweden and Latvia. The biggest decreases occurred in exports to the Netherlands (down by 35 million euros), Russia and Sweden (down by 32 million euros each). Compared to the previous year, shale oil was exported less to the Netherlands, mechanical appliances to Russia and electrical equipment to Sweden. Exports increased the most to Argentina, with more motor fuel dispatched.
The biggest exports from Estonia were electrical equipment, wood and articles of wood, and agricultural products and food preparations. The year-on-year decline in exports came mainly from mineral products (down by 63 million euros), transport equipment (down by 47 million euros) and electrical equipment (down by 31 million euros). Exports increased the most for raw materials and products of chemical industry (up by 12 million euros), with highest increases for disinfection products and nitrogenous fertilisers.
In April, goods of Estonian origin accounted for 71% of the total exports of goods. Their exports decreased by 18% and re-exports increased by 16% compared to April 2019. The biggest decline occurred for shale oil of Estonian origin, as well for communication equipment and miscellaneous manufactured articles, such as articles of bedding and similar furnishing.
The main countries of consignment were Finland, Germany and Lithuania. Imports decreased the most from Sweden (down by 66 million euros), Germany (down by 42 million euros) and Russia (down by 35 million euros). From Sweden and Russia, the imports of motor cars, and from Russia, the imports of fuels decreased the most. Imports of goods increased the most from Finland (up by 9 million euros), with more motor fuels imported.
The main commodities imported to Estonia were raw materials and products of chemical industry, electrical equipment, agricultural products and food preparations, and mineral products. The biggest decrease occurred in the imports of transport equipment (down by 104 million euros), electrical equipment (down by 49 million euros) and mechanical appliances (down by 47 million euros). Imports grew for raw materials and products of chemical industry (up by 18 million euros), mainly driven by pharmaceuticals.
|Month||Exports, million euros||Imports, million euros||Balance, million euros|
|2019||2020||change, %||2019||2020||change, %||2019||2020|
|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, %|
|Euro area 19||478||47||-24||Euro area 19||631||58||-18|
|Non-EU and United Kingdom||360||35||-4||Non-EU and United Kingdom||263||24||-21|
|1. Finland||185||18||-9||1. Finland||168||15||6|
|2. Sweden||97||10||-25||2. Germany||107||10||-28|
|3. Latvia||84||8||-26||3. Lithuania||104||10||-24|
|4. Germany||74||7||-15||4. Latvia||96||9||-22|
|5. USA||73||7||-1||5. Russia||94||9||-27|
|6. Lithuania||51||5||-26||6. Sweden||79||7||-46|
|7. Russia||50||5||-39||7. Poland||74||7||-13|
|8. Norway||38||4||-5||8. Netherlands||55||5||-7|
|9. Denmark||37||4||-23||9. China||49||4||14|
|10. Poland||34||3||12||10. Belgium||24||2||-7|
|Commodity section (chapter) by Combined Nomenclature (CN)||Exports||Imports||Balance, million euros|
|million euros||share, %||change on same period of previous year, %||million euros||share, %||change on same period of previous year, %|
|Agricultural products and food preparations (I–IV)||99||10||-6||117||11||-16||-18|
|Mineral products (V)||94||9||-40||116||11||-28||-22|
|Raw materials and products of chemical industry (VI)||75||7||18||145||13||14||-70|
|Articles of plastics and rubber (VII)||33||3||-18||67||6||-9||-34|
|Wood and articles of wood (IX)||121||12||-9||49||5||0||72|
|Paper and articles thereof (X)||27||3||-8||20||2||-19||7|
|Textiles and textile articles (XI)||26||2||-24||41||4||-28||-14|
|Base metals and articles of base metal (XV)||86||8||-15||113||10||-15||-26|
|Mechanical appliances (84)||93||9||-17||105||10||-31||-12|
|Electrical equipment (85)||152||15||-17||124||11||-28||28|
|Transport equipment (XVII)||51||5||-48||65||6||-62||-14|
|Optical, measuring, precision instruments (XVIII)||47||5||9||29||3||-9||18|
|Miscellaneous manufactured articles (XX)||78||8||-19||27||2||-26||51|
Statistics Estonia performs the statistical activity “Foreign trade” for the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications with the aim to determine how exporting and importing enterprises are performing in Estonia.
For further information:
More detailed data have been published in the statistical database and pre-defined tables. Due to rounding, the sum of rows in some tables may differ from the sum total of the column. Visualized data of Estonia’s foreign trade can be viewed in Statistics Estonia’s application.