Kuwait’s trade surplus with Japan almost halved in September

Kuwait’s trade surplus with Japan plunged 54.8 percent from a year earlier to JPY 23.0 billion (USD 218 million) in September, down for the sixth straight month on slumping exports, government data showed Monday.

But Kuwait stayed in black ink with Japan for 12 years and eight months, as exports still offset imports in value, the Finance Ministry said in a preliminary report.

Overall Kuwaiti exports to Japan plummeted 45.4 percent year-on-year to JPY 35.5 billion (USD 337 million) for the sixth monthly decline.

Imports from Japan slid 10.9 percent to JPY 12.5 billion (USD 119 million), down for the fifth month.

Middle East’s trade surplus with Japan tumbled 43.0 percent to JPY 267.4 billion (USD 2.5 billion) last month, with Japan-bound exports from the region shrinking 41.5 percent from a year earlier.

Crude oil, refined products, liquefied natural gas (LNG) and other natural resources, which accounted for 94.0 percent of the region’s total exports to Japan, dived 42.5 percent.

The region’s overall imports from Japan shrank 38.3 percent, reflecting sluggish sales of automobiles, machinery, steel and electric equipment.

The world’s third-biggest economy posted a global surplus of JPY 675.0 billion (USD 6.4 billion) in September, marking the third straight month of black ink. But overall exports declined 4.9 percent from the year before, as global demand, especially steel, mineral fuels and vessels remained weak amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Imports also dropped 17.2 percent on falling energy bills, mainly crude oil from the United Arab Emirates and LNG from Australia.

China remained Japan’s biggest trade partner, followed by the US. The trade data are measured on a customs-cleared basis before adjustment for seasonal factors.

Source: Kuwait News Agency