Statistics: Both exports and imports down on year to March

Estonia’s foreign trade by month, 2018-2020 Source: statistics estonia

Exports of goods from Estonia fell by 1 percent on year to March 2020, with imports falling by 2 percent over the same period, according to Statistics Estonia.

The fall was even greater on year between the first quarter of 2019 (Q1 2019) and Q2 2020, at 3 percent for exports and 4 percent for imports.

In Q1 2020, both exports and imports of electrical equipment and mineral products fell, the largest factor in the decline.

Statistics Estonia analyst Evelin Puura said wood processing equipment and shale oil had also had a significant impact on the fall in exports in March.

"Imports dropped mainly because less electronic integrated circuits and passenger cars were imported," she said.

Estonia's exports of goods amounted to €1.2 billion, and imports €1.4 billion at current prices.

The trade deficit in March stood at €150 million, a year-on-year (y-o-y) fall of €16 million.

Exports figures

Finland, Sweden and Latvia were Estonia's prime export destinations.

The biggest falls in exports occurred in those to Belgium (down by €21 million), France (down by €20 million) and Denmark (€19 million).

Less shale oil was exported to Belgium and Denmark than in Q1 2019, and fertilisers were exported less to France.

Exports increased the most to Sweden and Finland.

More communications equipment was exported to Sweden than the same period last year, and more prefabricated wooden buildings were dispatched to Finland, Statistics Estonia reports.

Export types

Electrical equipment, mineral products, and wood and articles made from wood constituted the largest component of Estonian exports in March.

The year-on-year decline in exports came mainly from mechanical appliances (down by €21 million) and mineral products (down by €16 million), Statistics Estonia reports.

Exports increased the most for electrical equipment (up by €21 million) and precious metals (up by €19 million).

Goods of Estonian origin accounted for 69 percent of the total exports of goods in March 2020. Exports of these fell by 5 percent on year, though re-exports rose by 10 percent, on year.

The largest export sector decline occurred in aviation spirit and shale oil of Estonian origin, as well in machines and mechanical appliances with individual functions, plus their parts, the agency reports.


The main countries of consignment for imports to Estonia in March were Finland, Germany and Lithuania.

Imports fell the most from Sweden (by €34 million), Finland (down by €22 million) and Latvia (€15 million).

From Sweden, the imports of electrical and transport equipment decreased the most; from Finland, the imports of mechanical appliances and mineral products; and from Latvia, the imports of mineral products. Imports increased the most from the USA (up by €33 million).

The main commodities imported into Estonia were raw materials and products of chemical industry, mineral products, and agricultural products and food preparations, Statistics Estonia says.

The largest fall occurred in the imports of electrical and transport equipment and the largest increase came with the imports of raw materials, and products of chemical industry and precious metals.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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