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Tuesday 06th of January 2009
June 22, 2005

Japanese export volumes fall again


by Brian Turner
Japanese export volumes fall again

Analysts are unsure if Japan’s domestic market is strong enough to support continuing economic growth in light of data released on Wednesday that shows export volumes are down 2.5 percent in May, the fourth decline in five months.

The preliminary figures from the Ministry of Finance showed that export volumes to Asia fell 4.7 percent, but that they were up 1.9 percent to the United States.

The value of those export was up, but only by 1.4 percent, to ¥4,796 billion, the smallest advance in nearly two years. Meanwhile, the value of imports was up by 18.6 percent in May to ¥4,499 billion.

This figure was a reflection of rising crude oil prices; Japan imported ¥638 billion worth of oil in May.

The increase in the value of imports meant a decline of 68 percent in Japan’s trade surplus to ¥297 billion.

Some analysts believe that low export figures to Asia are at least partly a reflection of increased manufacturing of Japanese products on the Asian mainland.

Additionally, at least one economist said that the strong import data meant a strong domestic demand that signaled a stronger Japanese economy.

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