Japan Aug exports rise 18.1 pct year/year - MOF

TOKYO, Sept 20 (Reuters) - Japan's exports rose 18.1 percent in August from a year earlier, Ministry of Finance data showed on Wednesday, in a sign of robust overseas demand. The result compares with a 14.7 percent increase expected by economists in a Reuters poll. It followed a 13.4 percent rise in July. The results for August marked the ninth consecutive month that exports have risen. Imports rose 15.2 percent in the year to August, versus the median estimate of an 11.8 percent increase. The trade balance came to a surplus of 113.6 billion yen ($1.02 billion), versus the median estimate of a 93.9 billion yen surplus. For background, please access this PREVIEW To view full tables, go to the website of the Ministry of Finance at: http://www.customs.go.jp/toukei/info/indexte.htm ($1 = 111.5800 yen)

(Reporting by Stanley White; Editing by Chris Gallagher)