Preliminary figures from the Central Statistics Office show that goods exports reached an all time high in April.

New figures from the CSO show that seasonally adjusted exports rose by €989m, or 12%, in April from March to reach a total of €9.303 billion - the highest monthly figure in the history of the series.

Seasonally adjusted imports for April fell by €279m, a fall of 6%. This lead to a "significant" increase of €1.268 billion (38%) in the seasonally adjusted trade surplus to €4.570 billion, the CSO added.

Exports of medical and pharmaceutical products jumped by 63% in April, while the export of organic chemicals also rose by 40%.

The CSO said that the EU accounted for 51% of total exports in April, of which 15% was sent to Belgium alone. The US was the main non-EU destination and accounted for 24% of total exports for the month.

Today's figures also reveal that imports of chemicals and related products rose by 25% in April, while imports of miscellaneous manufacturing articles rose by 28%.

The EU accounted for 61% of the value of imports in April, with 27% of total imports coming from the UK. The US and China were the main non-EU sources of imports.

Commenting on today's figures, Investec Ireland's chief economist Philip O'Sullivan said that over the first four months of 2015 total unadjusted exports were up over 20% year on year to €34.1 billion. 

"While the headline figures can be distorted by the multinational sector - and the barnstorming performance by the Chemicals sector is certainly flattering these results -, favourable currency moves and the improving prospects for many key trading partners are providing decent tailwinds for many Irish exporters at this time," the economist added.

Merrion economist Alan McQuaid said that the weak euro will be clearly beneficial for a huge exporting country like Ireland, as will the close trading ties with both the US and UK, two of the better performers on the global economic stage in 2014. 

Mr McQuaid said that competitiveness gains made against the rest of the euro zone in recent years have also helped Irish exporters. 

"As regards 2015, it will be difficult to increase and actually maintain market share in an ever-more competitive environment even with the benefit of a sharply weaker euro, though Irish exporters should continue to perform well on a relative basis," he added.