Lithuania’s Top 10 Exports

Lithuania's Top 10 Exports

Vilnius, Lithuania’s capital

Located in the Baltic region of northeastern Europe east of Sweden and Denmark, the Republic of Lithuania shipped US$33.4 billion worth of goods around the globe in 2018. That dollar amount reflects a 3.1% increase in value since 2014 and a 13.8% uptick from 2017 to 2018.

Based on estimates from the Central Intelligence Agency’s World Factbook, Lithuania’s exported goods plus services represent 81.6% of total Lithuanian economic output or Gross Domestic Product. That percentage includes a significant amount of re-exports. The analysis below focuses on exported products only.

From a continental perspective, 83.2% of Lithuanian exports by value were delivered to fellow European countries while 8.7% were sold to Asian importers. Lithuania shipped smaller percentages to customers in North America (5.4%) and Africa (1.6%).

Given Lithuania’s population of 2.8 million people, its total $33.4 billion in 2018 exports translates to roughly $12,000 for every resident in the Baltic country.

Lithuania’s unemployment rate was 8.3% as of September 2018 down from 9% in January 2018, according to Trading Economics.

Lithuania’s Top 10 Exports

Top 10

The following export product groups represent the highest dollar value in Lithuanian global shipments during 2018. Also shown is the percentage share each export category represents in terms of overall exports from Lithuania.

  1. Mineral fuels including oil: US$5.1 billion (15.3% of total exports)
  2. Machinery including computers: $2.8 billion (8.4%)
  3. Furniture, bedding, lighting, signs, prefab buildings: $2.5 billion (7.5%)
  4. Electrical machinery, equipment: $2.3 billion (6.8%)
  5. Plastics, plastic articles: $2.1 billion (6.2%)
  6. Vehicles: $1.6 billion (4.7%)
  7. Wood: $1.3 billion (3.9%)
  8. Fertilizers: $880.5 million (2.6%)
  9. Optical, technical, medical apparatus: $879.6 million (2.6%)
  10. Tobacco, manufactured substitutes: $878.4 million (2.6%)

Lithuania’s top 10 exports accounted for 60.7% of the overall value of its global shipments.

Tobacco and its manufactured substitutes was the fastest-growing among the top 10 export categories, up 55.8% from 2017 to 2018.

In second place for improving export sales was wood which gained 25.2%.

Lithuanian exports of plastics and items made from plastic posted the third-fastest gain in value, up 18.7%.

At the more granular four-digit Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) code level, Lithuania’s most valuable exports are refined petroleum oils trailed by furniture, cigars and cigarettes, carbonates, medicines for prophylactic or therapeutic purposes, seats and insulated wire or cable.

Advantages

The following types of Lithuanian product shipments represent positive net exports or a trade balance surplus. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports.

In a nutshell, net exports represent the amount by which foreign spending on a home country’s goods or services exceeds or lags the home country’s spending on foreign goods or services.

  1. Furniture, bedding, lighting, signs, prefab buildings: US$2 billion (Up by 14.4% since 2017)
  2. Tobacco, manufactured substitutes: $682.8 million (Up by 82.5%)
  3. Fertilizers: $549 million (Up by 6.6%)
  4. Wood: $465.3 million (Up by 21.6%)
  5. Plastics, plastic articles: $457.6 million (Up by 36.1%)
  6. Cereals: $397.4 million (Down by -37.7%)
  7. Dairy, eggs, honey: $282.4 million (Down by -9.4%)
  8. Other chemical goods: $199.1 million (Up by 2657.8%)
  9. Milling products, malt, starches: $132.4 million (Up by 3%)
  10. Optical, technical, medical apparatus: $131.3 million (Down by -7.8%)

Lithuania has highly positive net exports in the international trade of furniture, lighting, signs and prefabricated buildings. In turn, these cashflows indicate Lithuania’s strong competitive advantages under this product category.

Opportunities

Overall Lithuania incurred a -$3.1 billion trade deficit for 2018, up by 90.7% from the -$1.6 billion in red ink during 2017.

Below are exports from Lithuania that result in negative net exports or product trade balance deficits. These negative net exports reveal product categories where foreign spending on home country Lithuania’s goods trail Lithuanian importer spending on foreign products.

  1. Mineral fuels including oil: -US$2.2 billion (Up by 48.6% since 2017)
  2. Vehicles: -$2 billion (Up by 38.8%)
  3. Machinery including computers: -$844.7 million (Up by 27.7%)
  4. Organic chemicals: -$774.8 million (Up by 31.7%)
  5. Electrical machinery, equipment: -$410.6 million (Up by 1.2%)
  6. Pharmaceuticals: -$341.1 million (Down by -0.4%)
  7. Iron, steel: -$272.2 million (Up by 48.9%)
  8. Salt, sulphur, stone, cement: -$264.7 million (Up by 16.3%)
  9. Fruits, nuts: -$210.7 million (Down by -4.1%)
  10. Paper, paper items: -$196.2 million (Up by 23.6%)

Lithuania has highly negative net exports and therefore deep international trade deficits under the mineral fuels-related category, notably for crude oil, petroleum gases and electricity.

These cashflow deficiencies clearly indicate Lithuania’s competitive disadvantages in the international fossil fuel market, but also represent key opportunities for Lithuania to improve its position in the global economy through focused innovations in vehicle manufacturing.

Companies

Lithuanian Export Companies

Wikipedia lists the following Lithuania-based companies involved in international trade:

  • AB Stumbras (alcoholic beverages)
  • Achema (fertilizers)
  • Alita (alcoholic beverages)
  • Dvarčionių keramika (ceramics)
  • EKSPLA (photonics, lasers)


 

Lithuania’s capital city is Vilnius.

Please note that the results listed above are at the 2-digit Harmonized Tariff System code level.

See also Lithuania’s Top Trading Partners and Lithuania’s Top 10 Imports

Research Sources:
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on February 21, 2019

The World Factbook, Country Profiles, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on February 21, 2019

Trade Map, International Trade Centre. Accessed on February 21, 2019

Investopedia, Net Exports Definition. Accessed on February 21, 2019

Wikipedia, List of Companies of Lithuania. Accessed on February 21, 2019