EU-China trade in goods: €185 billion deficit in 2018 - Products Eurostat News

null EU-China trade in goods: €185 billion deficit in 2018


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Logo Statistics Explained

Today a European Union (EU) - China summit takes place in Brussels and discussions on trade and investment are among the main items on the agenda. As background to the summit, here are some summary statistics on trade in goods, services and foreign direct investment.

In 2008 the EU had a trade deficit with China of € 171 billion. There was a deficit throughout the period between 2008 and 2018, reaching € 185 billion in 2018. During this time, EU exports to China were highest in 2018 (€ 210 billion) and lowest in 2008 (€ 78 billion). EU imports from China were highest in 2018 (€ 395 billion) and lowest in 2009 (€ 215 billion).

Infographic on EU-China imports and exports, 2018


EU and China trade, time series 2008 - 2018

The data source is here.

China is the top trading partner with the EU and accounted for 20 % of EU imports in 2018. In terms of EU exports, China was the second largest export partner (11 % of EU exports) in 2018, preceded by the United States (21 % of EU exports).


Trade in services

  • There was a larger trade surplus with China of € 16 billion in 2017, due to an increase in exports and a simultaneous decrease in imports in 2017.

Foreign direct investment

  • The EU was a net recipient of direct investment flows from China of € 4.2 billion in 2017.


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