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Kuwait’s April trade surplus with Japan down 4 pct.

Kuwait’s trade surplus with Japan narrowed 4 percent from a year earlier to JPY 75.5 billion (USD 483 million) in April, down for the second consecutive month due to slow exports, government data showed Wednesday.

However, Kuwait stayed in black ink with Japan for 16 years and three months, as exports still offset imports in value, the Finance Ministry said in a preliminary report.

Overall exports from Kuwait to Japan shrank 8.7 percent year-on-year to JPY 94.6 billion (USD 605 million) for the second straight month of decline.

Meanwhile, Imports from Japan also fell 23.3 percent to JPY 19.1 billion (USD 122 million), down for the fifth month in a row.

Middle East’s trade surplus with Japan widened 13.5 percent to JPY 845.6 billion (USD 5.4 billion) last month, with Japan-bound exports from the region jumping 15.3 percent from a year earlier.

Crude oil, refined products, liquefied natural gas (LNG) and other natural resources, which accounted for 96.3 percent of the region’s total exports to Japan, grew 16.1 percent.

The region’s overall imports from Japan surged 20 percent on demand for automobiles, machinery and manufactured goods. Japan’s global trade balance returned to deficit in April with JPY 462.5 billion (USD 3.0 billion), as the weak yen boosted imports bills.

Exports gained 8.3 percent from the year before, buoyed by robust shipments of automobiles, and semiconductor-making equipment chips.

Imports also increased 8.3 percent on crude oil and aircraft, as a weaker yen pushed up the value of their imports. 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: KUNA

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