EU’s biggest goods trade partner is US with €610bn

The United States was the European Union’s biggest goods trading partner in 2016 with €610 billion, or 17.7% of total EU trade in goods, according to Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.

China was the next biggest with €515 billion, or 14.9% of EU trade in goods.

These two were well ahead of Switzerland (€264 billion or 7.6%), Russia (€191 billion or 5.5%), Turkey (€145 billion or 4.2%) and Japan (€125 billion or 3.6%).

China’s her of EU trade in goods has almost tripled since 2000, rising from 5.5% to 14.9% in 2016.

Since 2013 the share of Russia in total EU trade in goods has nearly halved to 5.5% in 2016, as did the share of Japan since 2000 to 3.6% in 2016.

In almost all EU member states, the main partner for the export of goods in 2016 was another member of the European Union, except for Germany, Ireland, Malta and the United Kingdom — for whom the United States was the main destination of exports — as well as Lithuania (Russia).

In some member states, over a quarter of exports went to one single partner.

This partner was Germany for the Czech Republic (32% of exports of goods), Austria (30%), Hungary (28%) and Poland (27%).

It was the United States for Malta (27%) and Ireland (26%), while for Portugal 26% of exports of goods went to Spain.

Overall, Germany was the main destination of goods exports for 16 member states and among the top three in 22 member states.

For trade with non-EU countries, the three main destinations of EU exports in 2016 were the United States (21% of all extra-EU exports), China (10%) and Switzerland (8%).

About the Author

Mark McSherry
Dalriada Media LLC sites are edited by veteran news journalist Mark McSherry, a former staff editor and reporter with Reuters, Bloomberg and major newspapers including the South China Morning Post, London's Sunday Times and The Scotsman. McSherry's journalism has also appeared in The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Independent, The New York Times, London's Evening Standard and Forbes. McSherry is also a professor of journalism and communication arts in universities and colleges in New York City. Scottish-born McSherry has an MBA from the University of Edinburgh and a Certificate in Global Affairs from New York University.