Euro Area Trade Deficit Narrows Year-on-Year in January


The first estimate for the Euro Area trade in goods balance with the rest of the world in January 2013 gave a 3.9 billion euro deficit, compared with -9.1 bn in January 2012. The December 2012 balance was +10.8 bn, compared with +8.0 bn in December 2011. In January 2013 compared with December 2012, seasonally adjusted exports rose by 2.0 percent and imports by 3.1 percent.

The first estimate for the January 2013 extra-EU27 trade balance was a 16.5 bn euro deficit, compared with -24.9 bn in January 2012. In December 2012 the balance was -1.1 bn, compared with -0.2 bn in December 2011. In January 2013 compared with December 2012, seasonally adjusted exports rose by 2.9 percent and imports by 1.3 percent.

EU27 exports to most of its major partners grew in 2012 compared with 2011, except for India (-5 percent) and Switzerland (-4 percent). The most notable increases were recorded for exports to South Korea (+16 percent), Russia (+14 percent) and Japan (+13 percent). As regards EU27 imports, the pattern was mixed. The largest increases were recorded for imports from Switzerland (+12 percent), the USA, Russia and Norway (all +7 percent), and the largest falls with Japan (-8 percent),  India (-6 percent) and Brazil (-5 percent).
 
The EU27 trade surplus increased with the USA (+85.9 bn euro in 2012 compared with +72.2 bn in 2011) and Turkey (+27.3 bn compared with +24.9 bn), but fell with Switzerland (+28.9 bn compared with +46.4 bn). The EU27 trade deficit declined with China (-145.9 bn compared with -157.4 bn) and Japan (-8.3 bn compared with -20.2 bn), remained nearly stable with Russia (-90.1 bn compared with -90.8 bn), and rose with Norway (-50.7 bn  compared with -47.1 bn).
 
Concerning the total trade of Member States, the largest surplus was observed in Germany (+186.7 bn euro in 2012), followed by the Netherlands (+50.5 bn), Ireland (+42.3 bn), the Czech Republic (+12.3 bn) and Italy (+11.1 bn). The United Kingdom (-164.3 bn) registered the largest deficit, followed by France (-81.5 bn), Spain (-31.8 bn), Greece (-20.0 bn) and Portugal (-10.7 bn).
 

Eurostat | Nuno Fontes | nuno@tradingeconomics.com
3/18/2013 10:10:05 AM