Imports increased 2.0% to 241,046 million euros. The trade deficit of the mentioned period reached 25,446 million euros and the coverage rate stood at 89.4% (-0.3% in the period January-August 2018).
"Exports continue to grow despite the complex international context, which indicates the strength of our foreign sector," said Secretary of State for Commerce, Xiana Méndez; "also, there is a very positive behavior of destination markets such as North America and Asia, which reinforces the geographical diversification of international trade, which is one of the objectives of the Biennial Internationalization Plan 2019-2020 and PASE plans, Countries with Strategic Sectorial Performance ".
The growth of Spanish exports between January and September (1.6%) was higher than in Germany (0.9%) and United Kingdom (-0.7%), but lower than in France (4.1%), Italy (2.5%), the European Union (2.4%) and the euro zone (2.2%).
Exports to the European Union (65.8% of the total) grew 1.6% in the first nine months of the year. Sales to the euro zone (51.4% of the total) rose 1.1% and those destined for the rest of the European Union (14.5% of the total) increased 3.5%.
Sales to third destinations (34.2% of the total), rose 1.6% in this period, with increases in exports to North America (9.5%), Asia excluded Middle East (7.3%) and Africa (2.6%). On the contrary, those destined for the Middle East (-11.5%), Latin America (-0.9%) and Oceania (-0.9%) retreated.
The Autonomous Communities with the highest growth in their exports were Aragón (15.3%), Principality of Asturias (12.0%) and Comunidad Foral de Navarra (11.7%). The greatest decreases occurred in the Balearic Islands (-9.3%), Castilla y León (-5.7%) and Galicia (-6.1%).
In September, Spanish merchandise exports increased 5.8% compared to the same month of 2018, to 23,468.8 million euros. Compared with the month of August, exports increased by 20.7%.
The increase is greater than that registered in the euro zone (3.2%) and in the European Union (3.0%), France (3.7%) and Germany (4.6%). The main positive contribution comes from the automobile sector (2.5%).
The sector with the greatest negative contribution was energy products (-0.4).
Exports to the EU grew year-on-year and accounted for 67.1% of the total (66.8% in September 2018). Those directed to the euro zone increased 5.2% and those destined for the rest of the EU increased 10.2%.
Imports increased 8.9% year-on-year to 27,731 million euros. As a result, a deficit of 4,262 million euros was recorded and the coverage rate stood at 84.6%. With the seasonally adjusted series of the calendar effect, exports increased by 3.1% year-on-year and imports grew by 5.7%.