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International trade in cars in the EU: Germany leads the way

Aenert news. Energy Market & Energy Statistics
Eurostat provides statistics on international trade in goods, including information on the main EU partners and trade-specific characteristics. This includes data on developments in the automotive industry as an important pillar of the global economy in general and the European Union (EU) in particular.

According to the information provided, 2022 has become a peak in terms of car exports. The EU exported cars worth 158 billion euros, up 8 billion euros from the previous peak of 150 billion in 2015. As can be seen from the figure below, since car imports amounted to 62 billion euros, the EU received a positive trade balance, which amounted to 96 billion euros. It should be noted that the share of cars in total exports of goods outside the EU has declined slightly in recent years and was 6.1% in 2022 compared to 8.0% in 2015. The share of cars in total imports of goods outside the EU has also declined, falling from 3.3% in 2019 to 2.1% in 2022.

The largest partners of the EU in automobile trade in 2022 were the United Kingdom and the United States, and this applies to both car exports and imports. Thus, 23% of total vehicle exports went to the U.S., 17% to the U.K. and 15% to China. South Korea and Switzerland each accounted for 5% of cars, followed by Japan and Turkey with 4% each. On the import side, China and the United Kingdom (both 15% each) were the main countries of origin of imports outside the EU, surpassing the United States (14%), South Korea (13%), Japan (12%), Turkey (10%) and Mexico (8%).

As the table below shows, Germany, with €92.2 billion, is the largest exporter of cars among individual EU member states, taking in nearly three-fifths of total EU exports in 2022. Slovakia was the second largest exporter of cars from the EU (9.2 billion euros). Belgium, Spain, and Italy sold about €8 billion worth of cars each. Germany with 32.1% was also leading in total car imports (€19.9 billion) in the European Union in 2022, followed by Belgium (24.6%), Spain (8.9%) and France (8.7%).

Looking at the share of cars in the total volume of trade in goods in individual countries, we should note Slovakia where cars represent 45.6% of all exports of goods. By comparison, it is 14.9% in the Czech Republic and 12.9% in Germany. In terms of imports, for the vast majority of EU member states imports of cars were less than 5% of total imports of goods. Only three countries had a higher share - Slovenia (9.1%), Belgium (6.2%) and Cyprus (5.1%).

By the Editorial Board