The UK’s goods trade deficit with the rest of the world narrowed in February by more than expected, helped by a fall in imports, official data has shown.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said the trade deficit shrank to £9.1bn from £9.4bn in January.
Economists had expected a deficit of £9.2bn.
Imports fell 2.2% to £32.6bn in February, helping to offset a 1.6% fall in exports to £23.5bn – the lowest level of exports since November 2010.
The UK trade deficit is the measure of the difference between the value of goods the country exports compared with the value of the goods it imports.
The ONS said imports of aircraft and aircraft parts fell 46.3% in February, contributing to three quarters of the total fall in imports in the month.
Imports were also at their lowest level since April 2011.
The ONS said in the three months to the end of February, the goods trade deficit narrowed by £3bn to £26.2bn representing a fall in exports of 0.1% while imports were lower by 3.5%.
The UK’s goods trade deficit with non-EU countries narrowed sharply to £2.9bn n February from £3.9bn January, against forecasts for a gap of £3.4bn.