January Non-CIS Imports Rise to $15Bln

Machinery made up over half the value of imports coming from outside the CIS last month; sugar and cotton fell. Andrei Makhonin

Imports into Russia from non-CIS countries grew 26.7 percent year on year to $15.3 billion in January, according to preliminary data published on the Federal Customs Service's website, Interfax reported.

Machinery imports were $7.76 billion in January, up 35.4 percent versus the first month of last year. Imports of chemical products increased 28.4 percent to $2.28 billion and those of textile goods and footwear rose 221.3 percent to $1.02 billion.

Russia purchased $2.09 billion worth of foodstuffs and ingredients for making them — about the same as in January 2011. Grain imports were up 160 percent; tobacco — 26.4 percent; meat and meat products were up 14.8 percent and alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages up 2.8 percent.

On the other hand, sugar imports dropped 83 percent as the country approached self-sufficiency; vegetable imports are down 23.8 percent; fish down 11.4 percent and dairy products and fruits down 3.3 percent. About 84 percent less cotton was imported in January.

Imports of pharmaceuticals in January leapt 35.5 percent, while the volume of perfumes, cosmetics, soap and synthetic detergents brought into the country in the same period was up 28.9 percent.

Aircraft imports also dropped — down 84 percent in January compared with the same period in 2011. But purchases of locomotives increased 280 percent, and ground-based transport vehicles, ships and other floating equipment were up 50 percent.

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