- Resources for Journalists
The EU’s international trade is pretty stable lately, and growing slightly, with Germany towering over its fellow EU members.
The EU’s international trade, both within its internal market and with the rest of the world, is pretty stable lately, and growing slightly, with Germany towering over its fellow EU members.
This graphic, elaborated from Eurostat’s data feed up to November 2017, compares the trade balance of various EU countries. Since 2013, the general trend is fairly stable, despite some disruptive events, like the British 2016 referendum on Brexit.
If Germany’s figures are impressive (export was about €70 billion in November 2017), Greece, on the opposite side, is stagnating, with a negative trade balance that has been ongoing since 2010.
The Netherlands’ figures concerning its trade balance with the EU are also huge, as Eurostat’s figures don’t take into account re-exports: a considerable part of Dutch imports from Asia or the United States is transferred via the Netherlands to the European hinterland, e.g. tablets or mobile phones originating from Asia and reaching Germany or France with an intermediate stop in the Netherlands. After correction for re-exports, the value of imports from Asia and the United States as well as exports to EU countries is considerably lower. As a result, the Dutch trade surplus with Europe, excluding re-exports, is substantially lower.
Despite the fears linked to the process of leaving the EU, the United Kingdom’s trade balance is fairly stable. In general, trade within the EU was on the rise in 2017. By November 2017, EU members exported goods amounting to €167.2 billion (+6.6 percent compared to November 2016) and imported €159.2 billion (+5.4 percent), which amounts to an €8 billion euro surplus.