Manufacturing output activity is expected to accelerate in the next few months as a result of a 3.5% increase in real terms in imports of raw materials in the second quarter of this year. The survey on quarterly imports of goods carried out by the Manufacturers Association of Israel, found that following two quarters of stagnation, imports of raw materials were expected to rise 3.5% in real terms to a volume of $5.2 billion in the second quarter of this year in comparison to the previous quarter. Dafna Aviram Nitzan, Director of the Economic Research and Strategy Department at the Association, said the second quarter of this year saw the strongest increase in imports of raw materials since the last quarter of 2004. Imports of raw materials rose for all sectors of the industry in the quarter, the study showed. Sector by sector analysis indicated that 41% of the rise in imports of production input in terms of volume was carried by the machine and electronics industries, which saw a 6.5% rise to $1.74b. during the period. About 28% of imports were generated by the rubber and plastics industries, which reported an increase of 16% to a volume of $ 568 million, while imports of raw food products made up 8% with volume of $310m. Furthermore, imports of raw materials to the paper industry rose by 9% to $205m., while at the same time, imports of machines and equipment to industry bounced back 4%, reaching a volume of 1.3b. in the second quarter after a 4.5% drop in the beginning of the year.