Mauritius’ trade deficit rose to 65.1% year-on-year to Rs 8.48 billion ($282.20 million) in December on the back of widening imports of machinery and transport equipment, showed Statistics Mauritius data released on Friday.

The difference between imports and exports of goods in December 2013 was also higher by 6.2% compared to November 2013, showing a deterioration both on a year-on-year as well as on a month-on-month basis.

The value of imports in December rose 27.6% to Rs 16.68 billion compared to the year-ago period. The cost of machinery and equipment climbed to Rs 4.14 billion from Rs 2.55 billion, while the value of fuel and lubricants rose to Rs 3.82 billion from Rs 2.26 billion.

On a month-on-month basis, imports in December rose by 8.0% compared to November 2013. The increase was powered mainly by a rise in cost of minerals, fuels and other lubricants by 28.6% to Rs 3.82 billion and to a smaller extent by increase in sales of food and live animals, which went up 4.2% to Rs 2.73 billion.

The value of exports in December went up 3.3% to Rs 8.2 billion, on the back of higher revenues from the sales of manufactured goods, compared to the year-ago period. Sales of manufactured goods yielded revenues of Rs 2.8 billion, an increase of 5.2% compared to December 2012.

On a month-on-month basis, exports in December rose by 9.9% compared to November 2013, driven largely by sales of food and live animals which rose 13.6% to Rs 2.38 billion.

United Kingdom (14.4%), USA (12.4%), France (12.2%), and Italy (7.2%) were the major exports destinations in December 2013 while Mauritius imported mainly from India (24.2%), China (15.8%) and South Africa (6.3%).

Image (via Manufacturing Digital) : The difference between imports and exports stood at Rs 8.48 billion in December on the back of widening imports of machinery and transport equipment.

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