July 7, 2022

Japan government on Thursday reported the country’s imports to rise 43.8 percent in value in November, hitting a record level due to higher crude oil costs and the yen’s weakness. Thus leading the country to post its largest trade deficit of 954.8 billion yen since January 2020.

According to the Finance Ministry’s report, the country imported goods on a high of 8.32 trillion yen ($72.9 billion), while exports increased 20.5 percent to 7.37 trillion yen.

Summary of country’s imports and exports –

• In the reporting month, exports were up led by robust iron and steel product demand from South Korea and semiconductor-making equipment from China.
• The country’s car exports for the first time in three months rose, however, the year-on-year pace of acceleration remained slow at 4.1 percent.
• In the same month, the Japanese yen against the U.S. dollar weakened 8.9 percent from a year earlier, thus inflating import prices for resource-poor Japan.
• Imports from Asia reached a record high at 3.92 trillion yen, up 24.4 percent over semiconductors from Taiwan.
• While exports to the region grew 24.7 percent to a record 4.30 trillion yen in the reporting month.
• The country’s imports with the United States rose 43.0 percent to 855.8 billion yen in November due to increase in medical products.
• And exports to the same also rose 10.0 percent to 1.30 trillion yen. This was led by construction machinery, however, car exports fell by 11.5 percent from a year earlier.
• Japan’s largest trading partner, China, from its imports rose 17.2 percent to 1.98 trillion yen, on solid demand for clothing and accessories.
• Exports to the same country advanced 16.0 percent to 1.58 trillion yen.
• Japan’s imports with the European Union increased 39.3 percent to 884.9 billion yen.
• While exports expanded 16.4 percent to 652.7 billion yen over robust shipment of cars to Poland.

According to private-sector economists, the crude oil prices are expected to remain at a high level for some time, lifting Japan’s imports. However, as supply chain disruptions stemming from the coronavirus pandemic gradually ease exports are also seen growing on an increase in auto shipments.