OTTAWA, Ont. — Machinery and equipment-related cargo was the choice backhaul in November as imports rose 3.6% to over $8 billion in November, after being on a downward trend for most of 2003, Statistics Canada reports.
Leading the growth was aircraft and other transportation equipment imports, showing their usual volatility, increasing 17.4% to $986 million. Other machinery and equipment, which includes telecommunication and related equipment, edged up 3.4 % to $3.8 billion.
Imports of other consumer goods posted a solid 2.7 % increase to $3.9 billion. Miscellaneous end products were the source of strength and include pharmaceutical products, which were responsible for the rise in November.
A rebound in motor gasoline volume imports in November pushed petroleum and coal product imports up 17.3% to $309 million. This sector was the only contributor to the improvement in total energy imports, ending three months of declines with a 1.8% rise to $1.5 billion. Crude petroleum imports dipped slightly (-0.3%) to just over $1 billion on unchanged prices.
Import increases were not entirely widespread, as Canadian purchases of automotive products dropped 1.0% to $6.1 billion. Both passenger autos and trucks and other motor vehicles declined, offset slightly by some improvement in the parts category. Trucks dropped the most however, down 8.2% to $1.0 billion, followed by cars, down 0.8% to $2.0 billion.
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