Romania’s trade deficit rose 1.2 billion euro by May this year, bringing the total for the first five months of 2006 to 4.63 billion euro. Despite an increase of exports by some 20% compared to the similar period last year, imports had a stronger pace of growth with a 25% advance, a National Statistics Institute press release says.

The value of FOB exports rose 29.7% to 2300.9 million euro in May 2006 compared to May last year.

Italy remains the main exporter to Romania in the first five months of 2006 with 15%, followed closely by Germany (14.3%) and Russia (10%), then France, Turkey, China, Austria, Kazakhstan, Hungary, the US, Britain and Poland.

EU member countries remain Romania’s main trade partners as the country’s exports there cover 67% of the total. Most Romanian exports went to Italy (18.3%), Germany, Turkey, France, Hungary, Britain, Austria, the US, Bulgaria, Spain, Netherlands and Greece.