Energy imports lead the eurozone to register a trade deficit

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Energy imports lead the eurozone to register a trade deficit

The Russian tensions with the West after the outbreak of the war in Ukraine mark the new reality that Europe is experiencing. The eurozone’s international trade in goods with the rest of the world registered a deficit of 16.4 billion euros in March, after having recorded a surplus of 22,500 million in the same month of 2021, the community statistics office, Eurostat, reported this Monday. Exports of goods from the eurozone to the rest of the world in March amounted to 250.1 billion euros, a increase 14% compared to the same month last year, while imports reached 266,500 million, a year-on-year rise of 35.4% driven mainly by the increase in energy imports.

trade between members of the euro reached 236,800 million euros21.2% more than in March 2021. Between January and March 2022, the trade deficit of the countries of the single currency with the rest of the world was 52,400 million euros, compared to the surplus of 56,700 million obtained one year before. Exports in that period advanced by 16.6%, to 666,700 million euros, while imports increased by 39.7%, to 719,100 million. Trade between the nineteen countries that share the euro increased to 636,000 million, 24.4% more than between January and March 2021. As far as the European Union is concerned, the trade deficit with the rest of the world in March was 27.7 billion euros, in contrast to the surplus of 18,700 million in the same month of 2021.

Exports increased by 12.8% compared to March 2021 and stood at 220.5 billion euros, while imports rose by 40.4%, to 248.2 billion euros. Trade within the EU reached 368.7 billion euros in March, 19.7% higher than that detected in the third month of 2021. Between January and March 2022, the Twenty-seven achieved a trade deficit with the rest of the world of 81,500 million euros, against the surplus of 48,500 million accumulated in those three months of 2021. Exports grew by 16.3%, to 592.2 billion euros, while imports advanced by 46.2%, to 673.7 billion. Trade within the community club increased by 2.2%, to 990.3 billion euros.

Eurostat highlighted that in the first three months of this year the greatest increases in import flows and, to a lesser extent, in exports, took place in the energy sectorleading to a “significant increase” in the EU’s energy deficit. By countries, between January and March the EU’s trade deficit increased with China (from 50.3 billion euros in that period of 2021 to 91.9 billion in 2022), Russia (from 10.8 billion to 45.2 billion), Norway (from 500 million to 16.9 billion), South Korea (from 0.8 billion to 2.1 billion), India (from 0.3 billion to 4.2 billion), and Turkey (in their case, from a surplus of 1.6 billion to a deficit of 1.3 billion). Meanwhile, the surplus with the United States increased (from 40.9 billion to 41.7 billion) and fell with the United Kingdom (from 35.4 billion to 30.8 billion).

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