Top EU Export Countries

Bridge in Dresden, Germany

Bridge in Dresden, Germany

The United Kingdom appears to be on economically shaky grounds prior to its Article 50-based withdrawal from the European Union (EU) by March 29, 2019. In contrast, international trade for most EU nations continues on a business-as-usual basis.

Exports from the current 28 EU members totaled US$5.866 trillion for 2017. That amount reflects a -3.9% decline since 2013 but a 9.6% year over year improvement from $5.350 trillion in 2016.

EU sales of exported goods represent about one third (33.4%) of total world exports which amounted to $17.581 trillion during 2017. Latest export statistics show that the global tally declined in value by -7.3% from 2013 to 2017 but appreciated by 9.8% from 2016 to 2017.

Calculated using the International Monetary Fund’s World Economic Outlook Database, the aggregate Gross Domestic Product on a Purchasing Power Parity basis for all EU countries amounted to an estimated $20.983 trillion for 2017. Therefore, exports accounted for about 28% of the EU’s total economic output.

Given the European Union’s population of about 516.2 million people according to metrics from the CIA World Factbook, the total $5.866 trillion in 2017 EU exports translates to approximately $11,364 for every person living in EU member countries.

As the following statistical table shows, Germany is by far the EU’s leading seller of exported products.

Top European Export Countries

Below are the top European export countries that attained the highest dollar value in worldwide product shipments during 2017. Also shown is each country’s overall share of the global export total.

RankExporter2017 Exports% EU TotalSince 2013
1Germany$1.450 trillion24.7%-0.1%
2Netherlands$651.8 billion11.1%-3%
3France$522.8 billion8.9%-8.1%
4Italy$503.1 billion8.6%-2.9%
5United Kingdom$443.7 billion7.6%-19%
6Belgium$430 billion7.3%-15.9%
7Spain$319.6 billion5.4%+2.8%
8Poland$221.3 billion3.8%+8.6%
9Czech Republic$180 billion3.1%+11.4%
10Austria$168 billion2.9%-4.1%
11Sweden$153.1 billion2.6%-8.6%
12Ireland$138.1 billion2.4%+16.6%
13Hungary$113.4 billion1.9%+5%
14Denmark$101.6 billion1.7%-8%
15Slovakia$84.5 billion1.4%-0.8%
16Romania$70.6 billion1.2%+7.2%
17Finland$67.3 billion1.15%-9.6%
18Portugal$62.2 billion1.06%-1%
19Greece$32.2 billion0.55%-11.3%
20Bulgaria$30.2 billion0.515%+2.3%
21Lithuania$29.9 billion0.51%-8.2%
22Slovenia$28.8 billion0.49%+0.5%
23Croatia$15.7 billion0.27%+23.5%
24Estonia$15.4 billion0.26%-16%
25Luxembourg$14 billion0.24%+1%
26Latvia$12.9 billion0.22%-3.2%
27Cyprus$3.3 billion0.1%+62%
28Malta$2.5 billion0.04%-31.1%

The top 10 exporters represent 83.4% of the total value of all EU international product sales during 2017.

From 2013 to 2017, EU nations that grew the value of their exports at the fastest pace were led by Cyprus (up 62%), Croatia (up 23.5%), Ireland (up 16.6%), the Czech Republic (up 11.4%) and Poland (up 8.6%).

Leading the decliners were Malta (down -31.1%), the United Kingdom (down -19%), Estonia (down -16%), Belgium (down -15.9%) then Greece (down -11.3%).

Perhaps the most notable decline in export sales over the latest 5-year period was for the United Kingdom via its significant -19% drop. This metric gives Brexit critics a talking point to debate the UK’s departure from the EU.

See also European Union’s Top 10 Exports, Highest Value German Export Products, Netherlands Top 10 Exports, Canada’s Trade Report Card: EU Countries and Top EU Import Countries

Research Sources:
The World Factbook, Field Listing: Exports and World Population, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on July 25, 2018

Trade Map, International Trade Centre, Accessed on July 25, 2018

Wikipedia, List of European countries by population. Accessed on July 25, 2018

Wikipedia, Member State of the European Union. Accessed on July 25, 2018