Each day TFO Canada publishes a sample of trade news on the Canadian import market along with any new, updated or changed regulations and legislations regarding international trade; countries in which TFO Canada offers services and on the export sectors which it promotes.
Canadian International Merchandise Trade, January 2014Monday, March 10, 2014 > 10:08:52
Canada's merchandise imports declined 1.6% while exports edged up 0.2% in January. As a result, Canada's trade deficit with the world narrowed from $922 million in December to $177 million in January.
Imports declined to $40.8 billion as volumes were down 2.6% while prices were up 1.0%. The main contributors to the overall decline in imports were motor vehicles and parts as well as energy products.
Exports edged up to $40.6 billion, as an increase in energy products was mostly offset by decreases in motor vehicles and parts as well as metal ores and non-metallic minerals. Overall, prices were up 5.8% while volumes were down 5.3%.
Imports from the United States declined 1.8% to $27.1 billion, as imports of motor vehicles and parts as well as aircraft and other transportation equipment and parts fell. Exports to the United States edged down 0.1% to $30.7 billion. Consequently, Canada's trade surplus with the United States widened from $3.2 billion in December to $3.6 billion in January.
Exports to countries other than the United States grew 1.3% to $10.0 billion, as increases in exports to the principal trading area "all other countries" (+9.3%) were partially offset by declines to Japan (-20.1%). Imports from countries other than the United States declined 1.2% to $13.8 billion. Lower imports of crude oil and crude bitumen from Norway led to an 8.6% decrease in imports from the principal trading area "other Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development countries". This decline was partially offset by a 5.4% increase in imports from the European Union. As a result, Canada's trade deficit with countries other than the United States narrowed from $4.1 billion in December to $3.8 billion in January.
Imports decline on lower volumes
Imports of motor vehicles and parts declined 5.9% to $6.7 billion in January, as motor vehicle engines and motor vehicle parts decreased 7.5%. Passenger cars and light trucks also contributed to the decline, down 5.4% to $2.9 billion, as holiday shutdowns were extended at some manufacturing plants in the United States.
Imports of energy products fell 7.3% to $3.5 billion; the commodity grouping crude oil and crude bitumen (-16.5%) was the main contributor to the section's decline. Overall, volumes were down 6.2%.
Imports of metal ores and non-metallic minerals decreased 16.8% to $891 million. The main factor behind this decline was other metal ores and concentrates (-16.0%), mainly lead and zinc ores and concentrates. Copper ores and concentrates also fell (-70.9%). The declines in January for both of these commodity groupings followed significant increases in December.
Imports of aircraft and other transportation equipment and parts declined 10.3% to $1.2 billion. Imports of aircraft were down $113 million to $170 million.
Imports of electronic and electrical equipment and parts grew 2.6% to $4.8 billion, as volumes and prices rose. The gains in imports were led by communications and audio and video equipment (+5.1%) as well as electronic and electrical parts (+8.5%).
Imports of metal and non-metallic mineral products increased 3.8% to $3.5 billion, a third consecutive monthly gain. Unwrought iron, steel and ferro-alloys, and basic and semi-finished ferrous metal products as well as unwrought copper and copper alloys contributed to the section's increase.
Energy products lead gain in exports
Exports of energy products increased 9.2% to $10.4 billion in January, on the strength of prices. Exports of crude oil and crude bitumen, up 11.6% to $7.4 billion, led the section's increase. Natural gas exports (+12.3%) also contributed to the gain.
Exports of farm, fishing and intermediate food products grew 7.4% to $2.5 billion, the second highest value on record. A 21.5% gain in exports of wheat led widespread increases in the section. Both prices and volumes contributed to the section's gain.
Exports of consumer goods rose 3.8% to $4.6 billion. The main contributors to the increase were pharmaceutical and medicinal products (+11.5%), miscellaneous goods and supplies (+8.9%), and other food products (+4.5%), mainly yellow peas and red lentils.
Exports of metal ores and non-metallic minerals declined 11.7% to $1.4 billion. The main factor behind the decrease was copper ores and concentrates, down $215 million to $130 million in January on lower volumes (-63.3%).
Exports of motor vehicles and parts fell 11.0% to $5.2 billion, as volumes were down 12.5%. An extension of holiday shutdowns in both the United States and Canada contributed to the decrease in exports of both motor vehicle engines and motor vehicle parts (-21.8%) and passenger cars and light trucks (-8.1%).