Macedonia’s Top 10 Exports

Macedonia's flag


A Balkan country in southeastern Europe, the Republic of Macedonia shipped US$4.8 billion worth of goods around the globe in 2016, up by 77.8% since 2009 when the Great Recession kicked in and up by 6.6% from 2015 to 2016.

Macedonia’s top 10 exports accounted for over three-quarters (76%) of the overall value of its global shipments.

Based on statistics from the International Monetary Fund’s World Economic Outlook Database, Macedonia’s total Gross Domestic Product amounted to $30.13 billion in 2016 (on a purchasing power parity basis). Therefore, exports accounted for about 15.9% of total Macedonian economic output.

From a continental perspective, 94.3% of Macedonian exports by value were delivered to other European countries while 4% were sold to Asian importers. Macedonia shipped another 1.2% worth of goods to North America.

Given Macedonia’s population of 2.1 million people, its total $4.8 billion in 2016 exports translates to roughly $2,300 for every resident in that country.

Macedonia’s unemployment rate was 23.1% as of December 2016, per Trading Economics.

Macedonia’s Top 10 Exports

Top 10

The following export product groups represent the highest dollar value in Macedonian global shipments during 2016. Also shown is the percentage share each export category represents in terms of overall exports from Macedonia.

  1. Other chemical goods: US$977 million (20.4% of total exports)
  2. Machinery including computers: $599.3 million (12.5%)
  3. Electrical machinery, equipment: $531.9 million (11.1%)
  4. Clothing, accessories (not knit or crochet): $404.5 million (8.5%)
  5. Iron, steel: $361 million (7.5%)
  6. Vehicles: $181.6 million (3.8%)
  7. Articles of iron or steel: $164.5 million (3.4%)
  8. Furniture, bedding, lighting , signs, prefab buildings: $161.4 million (3.4%)
  9. Tobacco, manufactured substitutes: $131.1 million (2.7%)
  10. Ores, slag, ash: $125.5 million (2.6%)

Miscellaneous chemical goods were the fastest-growing among the top 10 export categories, up by 6,372% for the 7-year period starting in 2009.

In second place for improving export sales was the machinery including computers category which was up by 1,375%.

Macedonia’s exported vehicles posted the third-fastest gain in value up by 695.3%.

Two top categories declined in value, namely unknit or non-crocheted clothing and accessories (down -17%) and iron and steel (down -26.6%).


The following types of Macedonian 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 is 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. Other chemical goods: US$810.8 million (Down by -2,554% since 2009)
  2. Clothing, accessories (not knit or crochet): $361.1 million (Down by -19.3%)
  3. Machinery including computers: $113.5 million (Down by -128.7%)
  4. Ores, slag, ash: $100.5 million (Up by 117.7%)
  5. Tobacco, manufactured substitutes: $88.3 million (Down by -4.8%)
  6. Furniture, bedding, lighting, signs, prefab buildings: $86.6 million (Down by -612.9%)
  7. Knit or crochet clothing, accessories: $69.5 million (Up by 9.6%)
  8. Vegetables: $61.7 million (Down by -3.5%)
  9. Articles of iron or steel: $42.3 million (Up by 18.9%)
  10. Beverages, spirits, vinegar: $26.8 million (Down by -49.5%)

Macedonia has highly positive net exports in the international trade of miscellaneous chemical products. In turn, these cashflows indicate Macedonia’s strong competitive advantages under the other chemical goods category.


Overall, Macedonia incurred a -$2 billion trade deficit for 2016 down -16.1% from -$2.4 billion during 2009.

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

  1. Gems, precious metals: -US$831.4 million (Up by 23,054% since 2009)
  2. Mineral fuels including oil: -$554.8 million (Down by -8.6%)
  3. Ceramic products: -$269.6 million (Up by 1,330%)
  4. Plastics, plastic articles: -$209.1 million (Up by 57%)
  5. Vehicles : -$162.2 million (Down by -42.6%)
  6. Cotton: -$94.6 million (Down by -19.9%)
  7. Meat: -$90.3 million (Down by -4.5%)
  8. Paper, paper items: -$89.5 million (Down by -15.3%)
  9. Manmade staple fibers: -$86.6 million (Up by 31.7%)
  10. Pharmaceuticals: -$79.8 million (Up by 14.7%)

Macedonia has highly negative net exports and therefore deep international trade deficits for platinum under the gems and precious metals category.


Macedonian Export Companies

Not one Macedonian corporation ranks among Forbes Global 2000 for 2016.

Wikipedia lists export-related companies from Macedonia. Selected examples are shown below:

  • Aktiva (steel)
  • Alkaloid (pharmaceuticals)
  • FAS Sanos (commercial vehicles, trucks)
  • Makpetrol (oil, gas)
  • OKTA (oil, gas)
  • ONE.VIP (mobile telecommunications)
  • Teteks (textiles, clothing)
  • Tutunski kombinat Prilep (tobacco)

Macedonia’s capital city is Skopje.

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

See also Bulgaria’s Top Trading Partners, United Kingdom’s Top Trading Partners and Capital Facts for Skopje, Macedonia

Research Sources:
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on April 11, 2017

The World Factbook, Country Profiles, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on April 11, 2017

Trade Map, International Trade Centre. Accessed on April 11, 2017

Investopedia, Net Exports Definition. Accessed on April 11, 2017

Wikipedia, List of Companies of Macedonia. Accessed on April 11, 2017

Forbes 2016 Global 2000 rankings, The World’s Biggest Public Companies. Accessed on April 11, 2017