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Forest industry products pulled down the exports in August

10.10.2008 10.00
Press release

The value of exports in August remained at 5 billion euros, i.e. five per cent lower than in August last year. The exports were pulled down especially by the forest industry products, as the value of exports of these products was significantly lower than a year ago. During the first part of the year, the development of Finnish foreign trade was weaker than that of the entire EU area or that of our neighbouring country, Sweden.

- The value of exports of forest industry products has been decreasing since the spring, as the exports of wood have decreased, says Mr Kari Tähtivaara, Senior Customs Inspector at the National Board of Customs.

The exports of electrical machinery and equipment also fell distinctly. The exports of other machinery and equipment as well as the exports of zinc and nickel were weaker than last year. On the other hand, the value of exports of petroleum products kept growing strongly.

Ore concentrates as well as machinery and equipment caused a decrease in imports

Imports were reduced by one per cent, reaching a value of 4.8 billion euros. Imports were most distinctly weakened by ore concentrates as well as by electrical machinery and equipment. Also the imports of other machinery and equipment, vehicles and nickel decreased compared to August last year. On the other hand, the value of imports of petroleum and petroleum products increased.

The trade surplus amounted to 195 million euros, which is clearly lower than the 437 million euros a year earlier.

The development of Finnish foreign trade was weaker than in the rest of the EU area

Russia continued strengthening its position as Finland's main trading partner both in imports and in exports. The trade with other important countries decreased compared to August last year.

Exports to the EU area were reduced by two per cent in August and the imports from the EU area by four per cent. Exports to countries outside the EU decreased by a tenth, whereas imports from these countries increased by two per cent, due to petroleum deliveries.

- During the first part of the year, the development of Finnish foreign trade has been weaker than that of the entire EU area or that of our neighbouring country, Sweden, says Mr Tähtivaara. According to Eurostat statistics, many new EU countries in particular had increased their imports and exports in January-June.

National Board of Customs, Statistics Unit
More information from Customs: Mr Kari Tähtivaara, Senior Customs Inspector, tel. 020 492 1844, or www.tulli.fi > In English > Foreign Trade Statistics
Statistics bulletin