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Imports of petrol up

IMPORTS of petrol through Irish ports jumped by €1bn last year despite an overall drop in the volume of imports.

A new report on the performance of Irish ports from the Irish Maritime Development Office found that with the exception of dry bulk goods, Irish imports were down.

Meanwhile, medical and pharmaceutical products and organic chemicals exports increased by 9pc and 4pc.

The report said that exports to key overseas markets in the US and Asia increased by 5pc, driven by the pharmaceutical, chemical and food sectors -- especially dairy and meat.