The European Union countries have open economies in which imports and exports form a significant part of gross domestic product (GDP). Figure 1 shows the development since 2010 of the EU's international trade in goods and services as a percentage of GDP. The imports and exports include both intra-EU and extra-EU trade. The percentage of imports to GDP has remained stable between 2011 and 2016 with a slight increase in 2017, while the percentage of exports to GDP has been increasing constantly. This shows the increasing role of the EU as a net exporter in the world.