Exports to Asian countries accounted for 18.8 per cent of the total trade goods in the first quarter of 2021, with a combined value of €142.2 million. Imports from Asia made up 21.9 per cent, equivalent to €251.1 million, in the same period. Figures by the National Statistics Office shows a decline in exported and imported goods to and from Asian countries compared with the first three months of 2020, but the balance of trade narrowed from a deficit of €120.7 million last year to a deficit of €109. 0 million this year.
The EU remains the biggest trading partner, absorbing 45.5 per cent of Malta’s total €756.7 million exports and sourcing 59.2 per cent of the €1,145.4 million imports. Imports to Italy fell from €274.4 million in the first quarter of 2020 to €197 million this year, but it was still Malta’s top trading country. Exports to Italy rose from €39.9 million to €71.6 million year-on-year, registering the biggest increase in exports.
Exports to Germany, on the other hand, saw the largest decrease (€72.5M), but at a total of €96.5 million, it was the biggest destination for exports. Germany is also the only EU member with which Malta registered a surplus in the balance of trade, closing at €24.8 million.
A positive balance of trade was also registered with the United States (€8.4M), Tunisia (€3.9M), and South Africa (€1.2M).