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UK trade with EU-28 and with the rest of the world (2016)

UK trade with EU-28 and with the rest of the world (2016)

UK trade with EU-28 and with the rest of the world (2016)

Figure 1 shows the evolution of UK imports and exports with the EU as opposed to extra-EU partners. It is interesting to note that, during the post-2009 crisis, UK exports to non-EU partners exceeded those with EU partners, however this trend has slowly reverted, and imports from the EU remain greater than those from extra-EU trade partners. As such, in 2017, UK trade with the EU amounted to 50 % of UK total trade. Map 1 illustrates the percentage of UK trade with the EU by Member State. The top EU trade partners for the UK are Germany (25 % of total UK trade with the EU), the Netherlands (15 %), France (12 %), Belgium (9 %) and Ireland (8 %). UK trade with the EU is highly concentrated among certain EU trade partners. Indeed, the top three EU partners account for 51 %, while the top five reach 68 % and top ten account for 90 % of UK’s trade with the EU. However, such analysis does not account for possible internal EU value chains. For example, the UK might import an input from Germany, but that input can be manufactured using parts from other EU partners. So this descriptive picture might actually underestimate the potential importance of UK-EU trade relations for certain EU countries, with which the UK has less direct trade flows.

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