UK boost as trade deficit lowest for two years

Britain's trade deficit with the rest of the world has narrowed to its lowest level for nearly two years, official figures showed. The shortfall between what Britain exports and what it imports fell from £3.15bn in March and £1.83bn in April to £393m in May. It was the smallest deficit since June 2013, although the improvement was down to a fall in imports rather than a rise in exports of British-made goods. Total exports of goods and services were flat at £43bn in May while exports of goods alone dipped by £14m to £24.6bn, according to a report by the Office for National Statistics. The ONS figures showed British firms exported £33.4bn of goods to the European Union in the three months to May - down 13.4% on the same months last year. Sales to the rest of the world rose 8.9% to £39.7bn in a further sign that the UK is becoming less reliant on sluggish European countries for trade.


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