Japan’s trade deficit with Kuwait remains wide

April 22, 2010

Japan’s trade deficit with Kuwait in March widened for the fifth straight as the import prices outpaced growth in its Kuwait-bound exports, official data showed on Thursday.

Shipments to Kuwait from the world’s second-largest economy surged 148.8 per cent from a year earlier to JPY 1.82 billion ($ 19.6 million), while Kuwait’s exports to Japan jumped 40.7 percent to JPY 7.66 billion ($ 82.3 million), the Finance Ministry said in a preliminary report, Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) said.

As a result, Japan’s trade deficit with Kuwait gained 23.9 per cent from a year earlier to JPY 5.84 billion ($ 62.8 million) in March, marking the red ink figure for the 26th straight month.

Japan is Kuwait’s major trading partner, with two-way trade reaching $ 10.53 billion in 2009.

Japan’s trade deficit with the entire Middle East skyrocketed, up 56.5 percent to JPY 697.34 billion ($ 7.50 billion). Its Middle East-bound exports rose 53.4 per cent from a year earlier to JPY 247.50 billion ($ 2.66 billion) on the back of brisk demand of automobiles, steel and rubber products, which accounted for 72.1 percent of Japan’s total exports to the region. Shipments of vehicles to the Middle East surged 201.4 per cent.

March imports from the Middle East to Japan rose 55.7 percent to JPY 944.83 billion ($ 10.16 billion), largely due to a 57.5 percent growth of crude oil and petroleum products, which accounted for 98.2 per cent of Japan’s total imports from the area. Crude oil shipments went up 65.6 per cent year-on-year.

Japan’s global trade surplus stood at JPY 948.91 billion ($ 10.20 billion) in March for the 12th straight month of surplus, fueled by robust demand for vehicles and electronics in Asia.

Exports surged 43.5 per cent on year to JPY 6.005 trillion ($ 64.54 billion) for the fourth straight monthly increase, adding a fresh signs of the nation’s economic recovery.

Shipments to China, Japan’s top trading partner, and the US soared. Imports went up 20.7 per cent to JPY 5.056 trillion ($ 54.44 billion).

The trade data are measured on a customs-cleared basis before adjustment for seasonal factors.



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About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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