Trade balance deficit of 2.3 billion in Eurozone

According to estimates there was a deficit of 2.3 billion Euros in the trade balance of the Eurozone (EZ15) with regard to the rest of the world in July 2008. In July last year there had still been a surplus of 5.0 billion Euros. In June 2008 the balance had already been -0.2 billion and in June last year +7.5 billion. The big deficit in July this year is the consequence of a stronger increase in imports (+5.8%) than in exports (+3.7%).

The trade balance deficit of the EU27 in July 2008 amounted to an estimated 21.5 billion Euros as compared to a deficit of 13.6 billion in July 2007. In June this year the deficit in the trade balance of the EU27 was 20.0 billion and in June 2007 -9.1 billion. Here again imports (+4.1%) grew more than exports (3.9%).

Here the figures in more detail: with regard to the trade in energy the deficit in the EU27 increased to -181.1 billion in the period from January to June 2008 as compared to -122.0 billion in the period from January to June 2007 while in the trade with machines and motor vehicles the surplus increased from +57.6 billion to +74.2 billion.

Apart from exports to the US and Japan (-4% each in the period from January to June) and imports from South Korea (-4%), Japan (-3%) and the USA (0%), the trade of the EU27 with the majority of its major trading partners increased. Most important increases were registered in exports to Russia (+24%), Brazil (+20%) and China (+46%) as well as in imports from Russia and Norway (+27% each).

The trade balance surplus of the EU27 with regard to the USA fell to +32.4 billion Euros in the period from January to June 2008 compared to +38.1 billion in the period from January to June 2007) and increased with regard to Switzerland (+9.4 bilion as compared to +6.9 billion). The deficit in the trade balance of the EU27 increased with regard to Russia (from -28.4 billion Euros to -37.4 billion) and Norway (from -15.8 billion to -24.2 billion Euros), remained almost unchanged with regard to China (from -72.6 billion to -72.2 billion) and Japan (from -17.6 billion to -17.4 billion).

Within the EU27 Germany accounted for the biggest trade surplus (+103.2 billion Euros in the period from January to June 2008) followed by the Netherlands (+21.8 billion) and Ireland (+13.0 billion). Great Britain generated the biggest deficit (-61.1 billion Euros), followed by Spain (-50.2 billion), France (-31.9 billion Euros) and Greece (-18.1 billion). GERMAN