International trade in goods in 2017
A third of EU trade is with the United States and China
At Member State level, trade within the EU largely prevails
In 2017, the United States (€631 billion, or 16.9% of total EU trade in goods) and China (€573 bn, or 15.3%) continued to be the two main goods trading partners of the European Union (EU), well ahead of Switzerland (€261 bn, or 7.0%), Russia (€231 bn, or 6.2%), Turkey (€154 bn, or 4.1%) and Japan (€129 bn, or 3.5%). However, the trends observed over time differ for these top trading partners of the EU. After recording a significant and almost continuous fall until 2011, the share of the United States in EU total trade in goods had increased to nearly 18% in 2015 and 2016, before decreasing again slightly in 2017. The share of China has almost tripled since 2000, rising from 5.5% to 15.3% in 2017. The share of Russia in total EU trade had been decreasing since 2012 from nearly 10% to around 6% in 2016, and slightly picked up in 2017. The share of trade with Japan has fallen by more than a half since 2000 – from 7.5% in 2000 to 3.5% in 2017. As for Switzerland and Turkey, their respective shares in trade remained relatively unchanged over the entire period. In 2017, machinery and transport equipment, other manufactured goods and chemicals represented the main categories of product traded by the EU.
EU top trading partners, 2000-2017
(Share in total extra-EU trade in goods, based on trade value)