Press Release 30/05/2017


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The value of exports from the Basque Country made up 32.2% of their GDP in the first quarter of 2017

Exports grew by 13.2% in said period and imports by 34.9%

Exports from the Basque Country posted a nominal increase of 13.2% in the first quarter of 2017, according to EUSTAT data. They stood at 5,792 million euros and in this quarter they made up 32.2% of the total value of GDP of the Basque Country, 2.5 percentage points more than the previous quarter.

Imports, for their part, experienced a rise of 34.9%, up from 3,536 to 4,768 million euros owing to the significant increase in Energy Products, which rose by 130.6%.

Evolution of the foreign trade of the Basque Country. First quarter of 2017.  Thousands of euros
Source: Eustat. Foreign trade statistics (ECOMEX)

The net balance was positive and showed a trade surplus of 1,024 million euros, with a coverage rate of exports over imports of 121.5%. If energy products are excluded, the non-energy trade balance registered a surplus of 2,052 million and the non-energy coverage rate stood at 161.2%.

Exports destined for the European Union were up 12.7%, compared to the same period of 2016, representing 66.9% of the total exported. Special mention should be made of the exports to the Netherlands (56.7%), the United Kingdom (21.4%), Belgium (13.2%), Germany (11.3%) and France (7.1%); exports to Portugal, however, decreased by 2.3%. Outside the EU28, it is worth mentioning the increases in exports to Mexico (27.1%) and Turkey (21.3%).

Imports from the European Union were up 36.5%, a result in large part of the rises posted in imports from Italy (18,2%), Ireland (18.0%), France (14.4%) and Germany (13.3%), but primarily due to energy imports from the United Kingdom (535.1%). From the rest of the world, there were significant increases in energy related imports from Mexico (275.9%), Nigeria (25.4%) and Russia (3.9%). Furthermore special mention should be made of the rise in imports from the United States (37.0%) and the fall of 9.3% in imports originating from China.

For customs duty groups, and in relation to exports, the growth of the three main sectors was noteworthy, Transport Material (18.2%), Metals and Manufactured (17.9%) and Electrical Material (6.5%). Analysing imports, it is worth mentioning the sharp rise in Mineral and Energy products (124.3%) and the increases in Metals and Manufactured (22.6%) and in Electrical Material (10.4%).

By province, Álava saw a rise in exports of 12.9%, mainly due to the increase in Transport Material (19.4%). The most sold product of this quarter (30.1% of the total exported) has been vehicles conceived principally for the transport of people (<10) with a diesel engine (from 1,500 cm3 to 2,500 cm3). Imports in Álava rose by 6.2% as a result of the increases registered in their three most important sections: Transport Material (9.6%), Electrical Material (9.2%) and Metals & Manufactured (7.1%).

Exports in Bizkaia grew by 19.6% as a consequence, among others, of the increase experienced in Metals & Manufactured (29.2%). The main exported product (4.8% of the total) has been Naphthalene which is primarily used in the manufacture of polyvinyl chloride plastics (PVC). Imports grew 60.1%, particularly owing to the large growth in Mineral and Energy products (128.1%).

In Gipuzkoa, the increase in exports was the lowest out of the three provinces (6.4%). The section which has grown the most, among the most important, is Transport Material (18.6%). The product which accounted for 4.5% of the exports from Gipuzkoa was Diesel and electric motor units for railway tracks and motorised trams (electric) and therefore it is was most exported product this quarter. Imports increased by 12.6%, with Metal and Manufactured posting a significant rise of 26.8%.

For further information:

Eustat - Euskal Estatistika Erakundea / Instituto Vasco de Estadística C/ Donostia-San Sebastián, 1 01010 Vitoria-Gasteiz Press Service: Tlf: 945 01 75 62 Further press releases on Foreign trade statistics (ECOMEX) of the Basque Country Database on Foreign trade statistics (ECOMEX) of the Basque Country

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The value of exports from the Basque Country made up 32.2% of their GDP in the first quarter of 2017

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