The trade deficit in Portugal stood at €4.1 billion in the period from January to May, a real increase of 700 million euros compared to the deficit posted in the same period of 2013, according to figures issued by Eurostat.
The trade deficit in the first five months of the year is explained by both a drop in exports and an increase in imports.
The first months of the year were affected by a stoppage at the Sines refinery, which had a significant impact on exports by Galp Energia and therefore Portugal’s foreign sales, which pushed exports down by 1 percent in the period.
At the same time, improvement in business and consumer confidence led companies to increase investment and drove household consumption, leading to a 2 percent rise in imports against the previous year.
Eurostat also reported that from January to May Portugal’s trade deficit was the fourth highest in the Euro Zone, surpassed only by France, Spain and Greece and the fifth largest amongst the 28 European Union countries. (macauhub/PT)