Ireland’s commodity exports grew rapidly in May against the backdrop of a surge in medical and pharmaceutical sales, well over one-third of total exports.
mports also increased significantly, with fuel imports increasing 142% in the year leading up to May.
Commodity exports in May were € 18 billion, up 33% from May 2021.
Health and pharmaceutical exports in May this year increased 63% to € 7 billion, accounting for 39% of total exports compared to May 2021.
Exports of scientific and professional equipment increased by one-third, while exports of food and live animals increased by 28% compared to May 2021.
Exports of chemicals to the United States have increased significantly, increasing from € 2.8 billion to € 4.3 billion compared to May 2021. Exports of chemicals to China also increased significantly, albeit at a lower base.
The EU accounted for 35% of Ireland’s total commodity exports in May, the United States 30% and the United Kingdom 8%.
Meanwhile, imports of goods in May increased by 46% compared to May 2021 to € 12.8 billion.
Imports of specialty machinery were up 366% to € 707 million, while fuels were up 142% to just over € 1 billion compared to May 2021.
Imports of organic chemicals increased 71% to € 2 billion, equivalent to 16% of total imports in May.
The EU accounts for 27% of total imports, the United Kingdom 19%, the United States 15% and China 12%.
After Brexit, fuel prices rose and volumes recovered, leading to continued spikes in commodity imports from the UK.
The value of goods imported from England, Scotland and Wales increased by 71% in May to € 2 billion compared to the same month in 2021.
Fuel imports from the UK almost quadrupled from € 163 million to € 632 million in the year to May, and imports of chemicals from the UK almost doubled.
Imports of mechanical and industrial products also increased significantly in the year to May.
Imports from the UK were 16% of total imports in May.
Imports increased 76% in the first five months of 2022 to nearly 9.3 billion euros compared to the same period in 2021.
Exports to the UK increased 27% from May 2021 to € 1.5 billion due to the sale of chemicals and machinery.
Exports to the UK accounted for 8% of total exports in May.
Imports from Northern Ireland increased by 23% to € 1.9 billion in the first five months of 2022 compared to the first five months of 2021.
Exports to Northern Ireland increased 42% over the same period to just under € 2 billion.
The Brexit trade agreement came into effect in January 2021.