Euro area external trade surplus 0.4 bn euro, 9.5 bn euro deficit for EU27

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Euro area external trade surplus 0.4 bn euro, 9.5 bn euro deficit for EU27The first estimate for the euro area (EA16) trade balance with the rest of the world in March 2009 gave a 0.4 bn euro surplus, compared with -2.3 bn in March 2008. The February 2009 balance was -1.0 bn, compared with +1.7 bn in February 2008. In March 2009 compared with February 2009, seasonally adjusted exports rose by 1.4% and imports by 0.6%.

The first estimate for the March 2009 extra-EU27 trade balance was a deficit of 9.5 bn euro, compared with -19.6 bn in March 2008. In February 2009 the balance was -10.8 bn, compared with -13.3 bn in February 2008. In March 2009 compared with February 2009, seasonally adjusted exports rose by 2.5% and imports by 0.7%.

EU27 January-February 2009 detailed results

The EU27 energy deficit decreased (-38.6 bn euro in January-February 2009 compared with -58.0 bn in January-February 2008), while the surplus fell for chemicals (+10.1 bn compared with +13.6 bn) and for machinery and vehicles (+11.3 bn compared with +21.9 bn).

EU27 trade flows with all of its major partners fell. The biggest decreases were recorded for exports to Turkey (-41% in January-February 2009 compared with January-February 2008), Russia (-37%), South Korea (-33%) and India (-31%), and for imports from Russia (-39%), Turkey (-30%), Norway and Brazil (both -28%).

The EU27 trade surplus fell with the USA (+4.2 bn in January-February 2009 compared with +11.7 bn in January-February 2008) and with Switzerland (+2.2 bn compared with +3.1 bn). The EU27 trade deficit decreased with Russia (-7.2 bn compared with -12.5 bn), Norway (-6.0 bn compared with -8.5 bn) and Japan (-3.7 bn compared with -5.3 bn), and remained nearly stable with China (-28.1 bn compared with -28.3 bn).

Concerning the total trade of Member States, the largest surplus was observed in Germany (+15.8 bn euro in January-February 2009), followed by the Netherlands (+6.3 bn) and Ireland (+5.6 bn). The United Kingdom (-16.0 bn) registered the largest deficit, followed by France (-10.6 bn), Spain (-10.3 bn), Greece (-4.6 bn) and Italy (-4.5 bn).

These details are released by Eurostat, the Statistical Office of the European Communities.

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