European Union (EU) returned to positive trading balance with rest of the world in March 2017, as the trade surplus amounted to 10.5 billion EUR. The amount is almost twice higher than the surplus reached in March 2016, amounting to 5.9 billion EUR, according to the Eurostat’s preliminary seasonally unadjusted data. In the third month of the year, the exports of goods outside the EU amounted to 175.6 billion EUR, representing an increase of 16% on an annual basis. The imports amounted to 165.1 billion EUR, with is an annual increase of 14%.
For the three months from January to March, EU exports to the rest of the world reached 462.5 billion EUR, while imports amounted to 468.2 billion EUR. This led to a quarterly deficit of 5.7 billion EUR, compared to the same period last year, the region recorded a deficit of 3.6 billion EUR.
In the Eurozone the trade surplus increased to 30.9 billion EUR in March 2017, representing an increase of 9.6% yoy. The single currency area exported goods to the rest of the world (including other non-euro area EU Member States) of 202.3 billion EUR, increase of 13% on an annual basis. Imports for March amounted to 171.4 billion EUR, which is 14% more than March 2016.
For the period of January-March 2017, the Eurozone exports reached 536.5 billion EUR, while imports totaled 489.9 billion EUR. This means that the region has achieved a surplus of 46.7 billion EUR, a slight decline compared to the same period last year, as the surplus was then 51.1 billion EUR.
Seasonally adjusted data show slightly different results for March 2017. The EU surplus on a monthly basis from this point of view amounts to 3.7 billion EUR and the Eurozone to 23.1 billion EUR.
The largest trade surplus for March accounts Germany – 15 billion EUR. Ireland ranks second with 3.7 billion EUR and third with Italy with 3.3 billion EUR. The biggest deficit is the Netherlands with 10.3 billion EUR, and the UK with 6.8 billion EUR.