A return of Greek exports to positive growth rates in November 2016, a month during which the oil product sector saw its pressures easing further, allowing the economy to capitalize on a dynamism recorded by most export sectors in the last few months, the Panhellenic Exporters Association said in a report.

In an analysis of premiminary data released by Hellenic Statistical Authority on the country’s merchandise trade, the Association said the November figures allowed the country to move towards breaking another historic record for the second successive year (excluding oil products).

The analysis showed that an increase in exports in November reflected a 10.7 pct increase in exports to EU countries despite a 2.3 pct decline in exports to third countries. Excluding oil products, exports to the EU grew 13.8 pct in November, while exports to third countries rose 6.4 pct.

In the 11-month period, Greek exports to the EU grew by 2.6 pct, but fell 7.7 pct to the rest of the world. Excluding oil products, exports to the EU grew 5.2 pct, while exports to third countries fell 4.0 pct.

All sectors, excluding oil products, moved higher in November, with five out of nine rising sectors recording double-digit growth rates led by farm products (fruit/vegetables and olive oil), industrial products and raw materials. Oil products fell 11.5 pct.

The association said Greek exports needed to grow by around 1.3 billion euros in December to lead to a new historic record in exports in 2016 (excluding oil products). Traditionally, December promises exports worth more than 1.5 billion euros.

Imports grew 2.9 pct in November to 3.77 billion euros from 3.66 billion in November 2015, excluding oil products imports grew by 1.2 pct. In the 11-month period, imports rose slightly (0.5 pct to 40 billion euros), while excluding oil products, imports rose 6.4 pct compared with the previous 11-month period.

As a result, the trade deficit grew 4.3 pct in the January-November period to 16.9 billion euros, while excluding oil products the trade deficit rose 11.8 pct.

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