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EU trade balance in services up to €188.2 bn

12/07/2018

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According to preliminary data for 2017, the EU’s exports of services to the rest of the world increased by 4.6% between 2016 and 2017, from €844.9 billion to €883.6 bn, while imports decreased by 2.3%, from €711.8 bn to €695.5 bn. As a consequence, the EU trade surplus in services, which had steadily decreased since 2013, increased to €188.2 bn in 2017 reaching its highest value since 2010.

Graph: Evolution of international trade in services

The source dataset can be found here.

 

ICT boosts EU surplus in trade in services
EU exports were dominated by "other business services" (R&D, business, professional and technical services), which accounted for over a quarter of total extra-EU exports (26%), followed by transport (18%) and travel services (15%).  “Other business services” were also the largest category of services imported by the EU (30% of EU imports), ahead of transport services (17%) and charges for the use of intellectual property (16%). 
The EU surplus in 2017 was mainly due to surpluses in telecommunications, computer and information services (+€73.0 bn), transport and travel (+€33.9 bn and +€32.5 bn respectively) and financial services (+€38.5 bn).  A deficit was recorded in charges for the use of intellectual property (-€39.8 bn). 

 

The United States, top partner for both exports and imports
In 2017, the main partners for EU exports of services remained the United States (€236.0 billion, or 27% of extra-EU exports) and Switzerland (€128.5 bn, 15%), well ahead of China (€44.7 bn, 5%), Japan (€32.3 bn, 4%) and Russia (€27.6 bn, 3%). The main partner for EU imports of services also continued to be the United States (€212.9 bn, 31% of extra-EU imports), followed by Switzerland (€69.7 bn, 10%), China (€27.8 bn, 4%) and Japan (€17.6 bn, 3%).
In 2017, the EU recorded surpluses for trade in services with all its main partners, except India (-€0.4 bn). By far the largest surplus was observed with Switzerland (+€58.8 billion), ahead of the United States (€23.1 bn), China (€16.9 bn), Russia (€15.7 bn) and Japan (€14.8 bn).

 

Graph: International trade in services by main partners

The source dataset can be found here.

 

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