German Exports Rise Sharply In March

BERLIN (AP) -- German exports jumped by 10.7 percent on the month in March and nearly a quarter on the year as a recovering global economy spurred demand, official data showed Monday.

German exports totaled euro85.6 billion ($109.3 billion) in March, the Federal Statistical Office said. In year-on-year terms, that was a 23.3 percent increase.

Germany -- which has Europe's biggest economy -- lost its status as the world's biggest exporter to China last year, but exports have been recovering in recent months as the global economy recovers.

The statistical office says German imports were up 11 percent on the month and 18.3 percent on the year in March. Imports totaled euro68.4 billion.

Germany had a foreign trade surplus of euro17.2 billion -- up from euro11.6 billion in March 2009.

Exports to other countries in the 27-nation European Union were up 16.8 percent on the year at euro51.4 billion, while Germany sent goods worth euro34.2 billion to countries outside the EU -- a 34.7 percent increase.

For the whole of the first quarter, exports totaled euro219.5 billion, up 11.3 percent from the first three months of 2009.

The head of Germany's BGA exporters association, Anton Boerner, welcomed the strong rise, but cautioned that the eurozone debt crisis poses the risk of "new imponderables that overshadow this upswing."

"Monetary stability is of decisive significance for German exporters, because it makes possible to calculate export business," Boerner said.

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