BUSINESS Japan logs record trade deficit in fiscal 1st half as yen's drop inflates import costs

BUSINESS

Japan logs record trade deficit in fiscal 1st half as yen's drop inflates import costs

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16:35, October 20, 2022

Japan logs record trade deficit in fiscal 1st half as yen's drop inflates import costs

Photo: AFP

An electronic quotation board displays the yen's rate against the US dollar in Tokyo on October 20, 2022.

Japan logged a record trade deficit in the six months to September, owing to soaring prices for energy and raw material imports being further inflated by the yen's steep decline against the US dollar, the government said in a report on Thursday.

According to the Finance Ministry, the deficit stood at 11.01 trillion yen (US$73.43 billion) in the first half of fiscal 2022 since April, marking the biggest for any fiscal half-year period since record-keeping began.

Japan's imports leaped 4.5 percent to a record 60.58 trillion yen in the recording period, eclipsing its exports that rose 19.6 percent to a record 49.58 trillion yen, the ministry said in its preliminary report.

In the six months to September, Japan's deficit with China, its largest trading partner, almost tripled to 2.84 trillion yen, compared to 981.49 billion yen logged a year earlier, the ministry's data showed.

In the same period, Japan had a trade surplus of 3.16 trillion yen with the United States, with exports increasing 22.8 percent to a record 9.11 trillion yen, while imports totaled 5.95 trillion yen, climbing 32.1 percent.

Japan booked a trade surplus of 1.30 trillion yen with the rest of Asia, the ministry also said, and logged a deficit of 876.55 billion yen with the European Union, in the fiscal first half.

In September, Japan logged a trade deficit for the 14th straight month, at 2.09 trillion yen, with the country's imports increasing 45.9 percent, while exports were up 28.9 percent in value terms, the ministry said.

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