EU surplus over 190bn euros in 2017Staff Writer | January 18, 2019
The European Union (EU) surplus in trade in services, which had fallen between 2013 and 2016, increased to €191.8bn in 2017.
Europe The main partners for EU exports of services remained the United States
In 2017, the main partners for EU exports of services remained the United States (€236.2 billion, or 26% of total EU exports) and the four EFTA countries together (€150.4bn, 16%), well ahead of China (€46.7bn, 5%) and Japan (€34.7bn, 4%).
The main partner for EU imports of services also continued to be the United States (€223.7bn, 31% of total EU imports), followed by the EFTA countries (€90.0bn, 12%), ahead of China (€30.6bn, 4%), Singapore (€22.3bn, 3%) and Japan (€18.3bn, 3%).
The EU recorded surpluses with almost all its main partners in 2017, except Turkey (-€1.6bn) and India (-€0.5bn).
Among the main partners, the largest surplus was observed in trade with the EFTA countries (+€60.4bn), ahead of Russia (+€16.5bn), Japan (+€16.3bn) and China (+€16.0bn).
Compared with 2016, the EU deficit turned into a surplus with the United States (from -€2.8bn in 2016 to +€12.4bn in 2017) and Hong Kong (from -€0.1bn in 2016 to +€0.2bn in 2017), while a significant increase in the EU surplus can be noted with the EFTA countries (from +€36.3bn in 2016 to +€60.4bn in 2017).
In contrast, the EU surplus fell with other countries (from +€42.1bn in 2016 to +€34.8bn in 2017).
The main components of EU exports of services were "other business services" (R&D, business, professional & technical services) which accounted for over a quarter of EU total exports (26%) in 2017, followed by transport (18%) and travel (15%), ICT services (14%), financial services (9%) and charges for the use of intellectual property (8%).
“Other business services” were also the largest category of services imported by the EU (30% of EU imports), ahead of transport (18%), charges for the use of intellectual property (16%) and travel (15%).
In 2017, ICT services remained the largest contributor to the EU surplus (+€74.1bn), ahead of transport (+€39.1bn), financial services (+€38.2bn) and travel (+€30.6bn).
In contrast, a deficit was recorded for charges for the use of intellectual property (-€37.5bn). ■