Exports rose 1.5 percent to CAD 44.1 billion in December. There were gains in 8 of 11 sections, led by metals and non-metallic mineral products.
Exports of metal and non-metallic mineral products increased 13.1 percent to a record CAD 5.6 billion in December. This increase was led by exports of unwrought precious metals and precious metal alloys, which rose 28.2 percent to CAD 1.9 billion, followed by exports of unwrought, basic and semi-finished aluminum and aluminum-alloy products, up 28.1 percent to CAD 860 million. Consumer goods advanced 5.2 percent to CAD 5.2 billion, on higher volumes. Exports of pharmaceutical and medicinal products increased 14.7 percent to CAD 806 million. Other food products, mainly yellow peas, also increased in December, up 6.2 percent to CAD 1.1 billion.
Partially offsetting these increases was a 10.3 percent decline in energy products to CAD 8.6 billion, the seventh consecutive monthly decrease. There were lower exports of crude oil and crude bitumen (-12.0 percent) and natural gas (-19.7 percent) but higher exports of refined petroleum energy products (+13.7 percent). Overall, prices declined 12.3 percent while volumes were up 2.3 percent.
Exports to countries other than the United States increased 4.5 percent to CAD11.0 billion, led by exports to the United Kingdom, up CAD 470 million. Exports to the United States were up 0.6 percent to CAD 33.1 billion
Imports rose 2.3 percent to CAD 44.7 billion in December with gains in 8 of 11 sections. The main contributors to the increase in imports were energy products, motor vehicles and parts, as well as metal and non-metallic mineral products.
Imports of energy products rose 9.3 percent to CAD 3.5 billion. Imports of crude oil and crude bitumen increased 20.2 percent to CAD 1.9 billion, on higher volumes, as a number of refineries have returned to full capacity following maintenance. Motor vehicles and parts advanced 3.3 percent to a record CAD 8.1 billion. Imports of motor vehicle engines and motor vehicle parts (+5.4 percent) and passenger cars and light trucks (+2.1 percent) were the main contributors to the gain. Imports of metal and non-metallic mineral products increased 6.1 percent to CAD 4.2 billion, as volumes rose 4.4 percent and prices 1.7 percent. There were increases in 9 of the 10 commodity groupings in the section, led by unwrought precious metals and precious metal alloys, up 18.6 percent to CAD 926 million.
Imports from countries other than the United States were up 5.3 percent to CAD 14.7 billion in December. There were higher imports from Saudi Arabia (+CAD 174 million), Norway (+CAD 171 million) and the United Kingdom (+CAD 116 million). Imports from the United States increased 0.8 percent to CAD 30.0 billion in December.
Imports were 7.6 percent higher in 2014 than in 2013 while exports increased 10.3 percent Consequently, Canada's annual merchandise trade balance with the world swung from a deficit of CAD 7.2 billion in 2013 to a surplus of CAD 5.2 billion in 2014.