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Highest ever EU trade deficit recorded in 2022

by Dubaiforum

BRUSSELS, 1st April, 2023 (WAM) – In 2022, the EU trade in goods balance registered a large deficit of €432 billion, reaching its lowest level since the start of the time series in 2002. The deficit was due, in particular, to a steep rise in the value of energy imports, which started towards the end of 2021 and continued through most of 2022, according to Eurostat.

Also in 2022, driven by increasing prices, extra-EU imports (+41%) and exports (+18%) reached their highest year-on-year growth rates recorded over the last ten years.

Data show that the EU’s internal market takes centre stage in EU countries’ trade of goods, although the proportion of intra-EU and extra-EU flows in total trade in goods varied considerably, reflecting, to some degree, historical ties and geographical location.

Among the EU members, the highest share of intra-EU imports was recorded in Luxembourg (90% of its total imports), while the highest share for intra-EU exports was recorded in Czechia (82% of its total exports).

On the other hand, the lowest share of intra-EU imports was recorded in Ireland (35% of its total imports), which is mainly because its primary trade partner is the United Kingdom. Additionally, the lowest share of intra-EU exports was reported in Cyprus (26% of its total exports).

In 2022, the Netherlands imported a large share of goods from extra-EU countries (only 39% of its imports were intra-EU) and exported them within the EU (71% of its exports were intra-EU).

Tariq Al Fahaam/ Hatem Mohamed

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