Exports of goods to the rest of the world advanced 2 percent to €176.7 billion from €173.2 billion a year earlier; while imports declined 2 percent to €150.2 billion compared to €154 billion.
In January to September 2016, exports were nearly unchanged at €1,512 billion and imports dropped 3 percent to €1,307.1 billion, resulting in a surplus of €204.8 billion, compared with €169.1 billion in the same period a year earlier.
The European Union recorded a €0.5 billion surplus in trade in goods with the rest of the world, compared with a €3.7 billion surplus in September 2015. Exports went down 1 percent to €147.2 billion from €148.9 billion a year earlier; while imports rose 1 percent to €146.7 billion compared to €145.2 billion.
In January to September 2016, the European Union recorded a surplus of €12.7 billion, compared with €31.6 billion in the same period a year ago. Exports of goods dropped 4 percent to €1,277.4 billion from €1,330.5 billion in the same period a year earlier, led by a fall in sales of energy (-20 percent), raw materials (-5 percent), food and drink (-2 percent), machinery and vehicles (-2 percent), other manufactured goods (-2 percent) and chemicals (-1 percent). Imports contracted 3 percent to €1,264.6 billion from €1,298.9 billion, as purchases declined the most for energy (-27 percent) and raw materials (-8 percent). Among trading partners, the biggest decreases in shipments were reported for South Korea (-10 percent) and Switzerland (-8 percent); while the decline in imports mainly reflected the strong fall in purchases from Norway (-20 percent) and Russia (-19 percent).