Japanese Exports Hit Record In 2023 On Weak Yen

Japan’s exports increased for the third straight year in 2023, hitting a record high, according to preliminary figures released Wednesday by the Ministry of Finance, reflecting strong automobile shipments and the effects of the weak yen.

Total exports reached 100.88 trillion yen ($680 billion) last year, up 2.8% from 2022. Shipments of cars rose 32.7%, while those of construction and mining machinery grew 16.2%.

Japan’s exports fell in 2020 as global trade slowed during the COVID-19 pandemic, but they have bounced back strongly since then.

Total imports stood at 110.17 trillion yen last year, down 7%, due to lower oil and gas prices, resulting in an annual trade deficit of 9.29 trillion yen. The deficit declined from 20 trillion yen in 2022.

Monthly trade data for December showed that exports climbed 9.8% from a year earlier, while imports slipped 6.8%.

China-bound shipments grew 9.6% in December, marking their first year-on-year increase in 13 months. Such exports had decreased until November due to China’s economic slowdown and its ban on imports of Japanese seafood. – Nikkei Asia

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