Electric cars: EU trade surplus of € 3 billion


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In 2018 the European Union (EU) exported € 4.7 billion worth of electric cars and hybrid electric cars that can be driven in combination with a petrol or diesel engine.  Imports of electric and hybrid electric cars were worth € 1.6 billion, resulting in a trade surplus of € 3.0 billion.

The main destinations for EU exports in 2018 were Norway (39 % of exports in terms of value), the United States (23 %) and China (10 %).

Imports into the EU came primarily from South Korea  (48 % of imports in terms of value),  Japan  (35 %)  and  the  United States  (10 %).

Pie charts showing main trade partners for electric cars in terms of EU exports and EU imports in 2018

Among the EU Member States, the largest exporter of electric and hybrid electric cars to countries outside of the EU in 2018 was Germany (64 % of export in terms of value), followed by Sweden (13 %) and the United Kingdom (10 %). These three countries were also among the top four Member States importing electric and hybrid electric cars from outside of the EU: Germany (26 % of EU imports in terms of value), Belgium and Sweden (both 16 %) and the United Kingdom (15 %).

Overall, trade in electric and hybrid electric cars was dominated by hybrid petrol cars, which accounted for 67 % of the value of EU imports and 60 % of the value of EU exports. Electric cars alone accounted for 32 % of imports and 39 % of exports.

For more information, take a look at the news item earlier this week on the number of electric and hybrid electric cars registered in the EU, accessible here. More details about statistics on the international trade in goods can be found here.


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