The European Union's transactions with the rest of the world fell from 252 billion euros (USD 274.8 billion) to 228 billion (USD 248.6 billion) in March compared with the first month of the year as the lockdown measures implemented to limit the spread of the coronavirus impacted the international exchanges of goods.
According to figures released by the bloc's statistical office Eurostat, the machinery and vehicles sector was heavily hit, with a decrease of 20 per cent of extra-EU exports amounting to 14 billion euros (USD 15.3 billion) compared with January. Imports of vehicles, other manufactured goods and energy products also decreased.
Despite the general downturn, exports of chemicals however increased by 4 per cent, the equivalent of four billion euros (USD 4.4 billion), the agency said.
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