Cate McCurry, PA
Cross-border trade has continued to soar in both directions after the Northern Ireland Protocol was introduced, new figures show.
According to the Central Statistics Office (CSO), imports from Northern Ireland for January to May 2022 increased by €357 million to €1.9 billion when compared with the same time period of 2021.
Meanwhile, exports to Northern Ireland from the Republic from January to May 2022 increased by €586 million to €1.974 billion when compared with the same time period in 2021.
Imports from Britain increased by €831 million to €2 billion compared with May 2021 – a rise of 71 per cent.
— Central Statistics Office Ireland (@CSOIreland) July 18, 2022
The main increases were in the imports of mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials and chemicals and related products.
Imports from Britain were 16 per cent of the value of total imports in May 2022.
The value of goods imports from Britain for January to May 2022 increased by €4 billion to €9.2 billion, compared with January to May 2021.
Exports to Britain in May 2022 increased by €319 million to €1.5 billion, compared with May 2021.
The main change was an increase in the exports of chemicals and related products and machinery and transport equipment.
Exports to Britain accounted for 8 per cent of total exports in May 2022.
The value of goods exports to Britain for January to May 2022 increased by €1,668 million to €6.9 billion, compared with January to May 2021.
The CSO figures were released as part of its Goods Exports and Imports for May 2022.
Ciaran Counihan, statistician in International Trade in Goods Division, said that in May 2022, Ireland’s unadjusted exports of goods were €18 billion.
Meanwhile, imports were valued at €12.8 billion in May.
“The increases in goods exports were driven mainly by growth in the exports of medical and pharmaceutical products,” Mr Counihan said.
“Imports from Britain grew by 71 per cent to €2 billion in May 2022 compared with May 2021, driven mainly by increases in the imports of mineral fuels and chemicals and related products.
“It should be noted that the large growth rate in imports from Britain is partly explained by the relatively low level of imports in May 2021.
“May 2021 was the fifth month in which customs documentation was required for trade with Britain, which impacted on our trade with Britain.”
Seasonally adjusted goods imports increased by €387 million to €12.1 billion in May 2022 compared with April 2022, according to the preliminary figures.
Seasonally adjusted goods exports increased by €259 million to €17.9 billion, leading to a decrease of €128 million in the seasonally adjusted trade surplus to €5,738 million in May 2022 compared with the previous month.
Seasonal adjustment compares month-to-month data by removing fluctuations that may occur due to seasonal patterns in trade.
The unadjusted value of goods imports increased by €4 billion to €12.8 billion in May 2022 compared with May 2021.
The value of goods imports for the period January to May 2022 increased by €14.2 billion to €53.6 billion, when compared with the same time period of 2021.
Imports of machinery specialised for particular industries increased by €556 million to €707 million.
Imports of mineral fuels, lubricants and related products increased by €591 million to €1,007 million in May 2022 compared with May 2021.
Imports of organic chemicals increased by €870 million to €2.09 billion, representing 16 per cent of total imports in May 2022.