The external trade deficit of Mauritius increased in June, compared with the same period of last year, from 170 million U.S. dollars to 203.3 million dollars, according to the newly released monthly figures from Statistics Mauritius. The imports in June rose to 426.67 million dollars against 366. 67 million dollars for the corresponding month in 2011. The rising deficit was attributed to the increased importation of foodstuffs and petroleum products. At the same time, the Indian Ocean island country's exports surged from 196.67 million dollars in June 2011 to 220 million dollars in June 2012. In terms of the export markets, Britain took the lead with purchases worth 36.67 million dollars just like in June 2011. The French market was also stable in the second position with 26.47 million dollars worth of Mauritius imports, ahead of the United States with 21.6 million dollars and South Africa with 17.76 million dollars. Regarding the country's source markets, India remains ahead with 93.3 million dollars worth of imports while China is in the second position with 70 million dollars. According to Statistics Mauritius, the trade deficit could rise to 2.83 billion dollars by the end of 2012.