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Cargo containers are stacked up at the Port of Vancouver in Vancouver in this file photo.DARRYL DYCK/The Canadian Press

Statistics Canada says the country's merchandise trade deficit shrank to $169-million in October, a big improvement over the September figure when the deficit was $1-billion.

Exports rose 1 per cent to $38.1-billion with farm, fishing and intermediate food products leading the gains.

Declines in exports were led by metal ores and non-metallic minerals.

Meanwhile, Statistics Canada say imports fell 1.2 per cent to $38.3-billion and were down 5.7 per cent from the record high reach in June.

Imports from the United States rose 1.6 per cent to $24.6-billion and exports edged down 0.2 per cent to $27.4-billion, cutting the trade surplus with the United States to $2.8-billion from $3.2-billion in September.

Imports from countries other than the United States fell 5.8 per cent to $13.7-billion and exports rose 4.2 per cent to $10.7-billion, reducing the trade deficit with those countries to $2.9-billion from $4.2-billion in September.