Israel saw its trade deficit shrink 20% to a three-year low $30.6bn for 2023 according to latest official data. The $90.0bn bill for goods imports was down 14% on 2022’s record $104.9bn (MEES, 20 January 2023), whilst the value of exports fell 11% to $59.4bn – though this figure appears to exclude Israel’s record gas exports for 2023 (MEES, 26 January).

‘Raw Materials’ imports, the largest segment, fell 14% to $39.2bn for 2023. The separate ‘Fuels’ category, which includes the import of crude oil fell 26% from $14.46bn to $10.75bn last year, thanks to both lower crude import volumes and a 17% fall in Brent crude prices to $82.18/B for 2023. (CONTINUED - 703 WORDS)