Consumer demand grows


A further sign of strong consumer demand has come in the latest trade figures, which show that imports from outside the EU were 32 per cent higher at £1,034 million than during the same month last year. Exports totalled £1,228 million, 28 per cent higher than June 1997. For the first six months, imports from outside the EU rose 38 per cent, while exports to non-EU states from the Republic were 39 per cent higher than the first six months of 1997.