France trade deficit widens sharply

10th December 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Dec 10 (AFP) - The French trade deficit widened to a record EUR 2.068 billion (USD 2.7 billion) in October from EUR 794 in September and industrial output in October fell 0.7 percent from the previous month, official figures showed Friday.

PARIS, Dec 10 (AFP) - The French trade deficit widened to a record EUR 2.068 billion (USD 2.7 billion) in October from EUR 794 in September and industrial output in October fell 0.7 percent from the previous month, official figures showed Friday.

Customs authorities attributed the surge in the deficit to imports of oil and intermediate goods - raw materials such as steel that will be transformed.

In the first 10 months of the year France's trade deficit came to EUR 5.261 billion after a surplus of EUR 699 million in the January-October period of 2003.

"Given the lack of French competitiveness, the appreciation of the euro and a slowdown in the world economy, we shouldn't expect the slightest contribution from foreign trade to growth in the months ahead," warned Laure Maillard of Ixis CIB.

In a separate report the national statistics institute INSEE said seasonally adjusted industrial output in France was down 0.7 percent in October following a 3.2 percent rise in September.

Manufacturing output, which excludes food and energy, was also down 0.7 percent in October compared with an unrevised 4.0 percent rise the month before.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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