Auto action leads way for export, import gains

OTTAWA — The news is betting better when it comes to Canadian trade, as both imports improved to close out 2009.

According to Statistics Canada, Canada’s merchandise exports in December rose 1.7 percent and imports increased 1.8 percent thanks to the strength of automotive products.

Exports to countries other than the U.S. fell 1.8 percent, while imports from these countries increased 1.5 percent. As a result, Canada’s trade deficit with the world widened to $246 million in December from $201 million over November.

Exports grew for a fourth consecutive month from $31.7 billion in November to $32.2 billion — two thirds of which was due to automotive products, with machinery and equipment (up 3.4%) and energy products (plus 1.5 percent base don price, not volumes) making up the rest.

Unfortunately, the export value for December 2009 was still 8 percent below the value recorded in the same month in 2008.

Imports, meanwhile, grew for the second month in a row — from $31.9 billion in November to $32.4 billion.

Auto products, again, were the main reason for the gain (up 11.7), plus passenger cars (8.1%). Both have been enjoying a modest upwards swing since May 2009.

Increases in industrial goods and materials and energy also helped tip imports in the black.

Despite the gains, though, import numbers were still 9.1 percent lower than in December ’08. 

Have your say

This is a moderated forum. Comments will no longer be published unless they are accompanied by a first and last name and a verifiable email address. (Today's Trucking will not publish or share the email address.) Profane language and content deemed to be libelous, racist, or threatening in nature will not be published under any circumstances.