TOKYO, May 19 (KUNA) -- Kuwait's trade surplus with Japan surged 82.7 percent from a year earlier to JPY 82.0 billion (USD 638 million) in April, up for the 13th consecutive month thanks to high export bills, thanks to robust exports, government data showed Thursday.
Kuwait posted black ink with Japan for 14 years and three months, the Finance Ministry said in a preliminary report. Kuwaiti overall exports to Japan jumped 53.9 percent year-on-year to JPY 98.5 billion (USD 753 million) for the 13th straight month of expansion. Imports from Japan declined 13.5 percent to JPY 16.6 billion (USD 129 million), down for the eighth month in a row.
Middle East's trade surplus with Japan swelled 117.0 percent to JPY 1.1 trillion (USD 8.3 billion) last month, with Japan-bound exports from the region soaring 91.3 percent from a year earlier.
Crude oil, refined products, liquefied natural gas (LNG) and other natural resources, which accounted for 96.3 percent of the region's total exports to Japan, jumped 98.6 percent. The region's overall imports from Japan grew 19.7 percent on demand for automobiles, machinery and manufactured goods.
The world's third-biggest economy posted a global surplus of JPY 839.2 billion (USD 6.5 billion) in April for the ninth straight month of red ink, as surging energy bills and a weaker yen continued to push up the value of its imports. It marked the longest streak of trade deficit since February 2015.
Exports grew 12.5 percent from the year before, buoyed by robust shipments of steel, mineral fuels and automobiles. Imports inflated 28.2 percent on higher energy prices, especially crude oil, LNG and coal. China remained Japan's biggest trade partner, followed by the US. The trade data are measured on a customs-cleared basis before adjustment for seasonal factors. (end)