German trade surplus narrows in January as imports rise faster than exports

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BERLIN – Germany’s trade surplus narrowed in January, as an increase in exports from Europe’s largest economy was more than offset by a rise in imports.

The Federal Statistical Office reported Tuesday that exports rose 2.2 per cent in January from the previous month to 94.5 billion euros ($131.2 billion). The figures were adjusted for seasonal and calendar effects.

Meanwhile, imports rose 4.1 per cent to 77.3 billion euros.

As a result, the surplus fell to 17.2 billion euros from 18.3 billion in December.

Germany has been criticized for relying too much on exports and hasn’t been importing enough to boost economies in Europe.

The statistics office says that compared to January 2013, exports to other nations using the euro currency rose 3.2 per cent in January, while imports from those countries rose 4 per cent.

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