German trade surplus reduced in 2017 due to higher imports. The exports exceeded imports by 244.9 billion EUR, according to the federal statistical office. The highest figure was achieved in 2016 amounting to 248.9 billion EUR. The data is being watched abroad, as Germany has been under pressure internationally for years because of its huge trade surplus. Recently, the head of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, also criticized the country’s trade policy.
The German exports grew by 6.3% in 2017 yoy and imports increased by 8.3% yoy. The exports figure beat expectations for a 1% fall while imports also came in stronger than the forecast for a 0.5% decrease.
The both exports and imports have exceeded the records reached by 2016. Last year, the exports reached 1.2794 trillion EUR, while imported goods amounted to 1.0345 trillion EUR.
The foreign trade balance ended December 2017 with a surplus of 18.2 billion EUR. The calendar and seasonally adjusted data are for a surplus of 21.4 billion EUR.
The 2017 figures showed that German demand was strongest for goods made inside the European Union, but there was also a nine-percent jump in imports from the rest of the world, including the United States. Most of Germany’s goods sold abroad meanwhile were bought by fellow EU member states, accounting for some 750 billion euros, up 6.3 percent on 2016.
The Foreign Trade Association BGA expects exports to peak at 2018. The exports are expected to grow by 5% to about 1.34 trillion EUR.