MANAMA: The value of Japan's trade with Bahrain increased 7.26 per cent to $1.3 billion last year, according to data released by the Japan External Trade Organisation (Jetro).
The increase in trade was fuelled by increased export of motor vehicles, which more than doubled in 2012, compared to the previous year.
Jetro is a government-related organisation that works to promote mutual trade and investment between Japan and the rest of the world.
Export of Japanese passenger cars to Bahrain grew by 125.6pc to $527.4 million, compared with $233.8m in the previous year.
Exports of trucks and buses also saw considerable increases.
Though export of electrical machinery declined 29.4pc to $22.4m from $31.7m last time, export of general machinery grew by 8.3pc to $70.3m from $64.9m the previous year.
Export of iron and steel products/materials grew by 73.5pc to $9.1m last year, compared with $5.2m in 2011.
Japan's mineral fuel import from Bahrain was limited to light oils as it completely stopped importing crude oils from the kingdom since 2011.
The value of import of light oils, however, declined by 35.8pc to $445.7m in 2012, from $694.1m in 2011.
Japan's other imports from Bahrain were aluminium, glassware, and small quantities of fish and other seafood.
On a macro level, the value of two-way trade between Japan and the GCC countries grew 12.3pc last year to $182.13bn, compared with $162.23bn in 2011.
Japan's exports to the GCC countries grew 27.1pc to $24.94bn in 2012 from $19.63bn in the previous year, and imports increased by 10.2pc to $157.18bn from $142.60bn.
The high growth in Japan's exports to the GCC countries was mainly attributed to the reconstruction and rehabilitation of vehicle and vehicle parts production facilities in the earthquake and tsunami-hit areas of North-East Japan, and partly to the gradual strengthening of GCC economies that were earlier weakened by the bad effects of the global financial crisis of 2008.
Japan's major exports to the GCC countries last year were motor vehicles, machinery and equipment, electronics, iron and steel materials, rubber products, plastic products and textiles.