Energy products accounted for over half the growth in the value of exports, followed by industrial goods and materials, which reached a record high. Notable increases were also recorded in exports of machinery and equipment, agricultural and fishing products as well as forestry products.
The value of imports edged up 0.7% to $34.8 billion. Import prices rose 0.4%, following four months of decline, while volumes increased 0.3%.
All import sectors except other consumer goods posted gains in December. The main sources of growth were energy products, agricultural and fishing products as well as automotive products.
As a result, Canada's trade balance with the world went from a deficit of $115 million in November to a surplus of $3.0 billion in December, the first trade surplus since February 2010.
On the strength of energy products, exports to the United States rose 10.8% to $26.7 billion, the highest value since November 2008, while imports were up 2.3%. Consequently, Canada's trade surplus with the United States increased from $3.0 billion in November to $5.1 billion in December, the largest trade surplus since October 2008.
Exports to countries other than the United States increased 7.3%, the sixth consecutive monthly gain, while imports declined 1.9%. Canada's trade deficit with countries other than the United States declined from $3.1 billion in November to $2.1 billion in December.