Ukraine’s Top 10 Exports

Ukraine flag


A sovereign state in Eastern Europe, Ukraine exported US$43.4 billion worth of goods in 2017. That dollar amount reflects a -31.4% decline since 2013 but a 19.4% increase from 2016 to 2017.

Based on estimates from the Central Intelligence Agency’s World Factbook, Ukraine’s exported goods plus services represent 47.9% of total Ukrainian economic output or Gross Domestic Product. Please note that the overall value of exported goods and services includes a sizable share of re-exports. The analysis below focuses on exported products only.

From a continental perspective, 54.9% of Ukrainian exports by value were delivered to fellow European countries while 32.5% were sold to Asian importers. Ukraine shipped another 9.2% worth of goods to Africa, with 2.3% to North America and 0.4% to Latin America excluding Mexico but including the Caribbean.

Given Ukraine’s population of 44 million people, its total $43.4 billion in 2017 exports translates to roughly $1,000 for every resident in the Eastern European country.

Ukraine’s unemployment rate was 9.7% as of March 2018 according to Trading Economics.

Ukraine’s Top 10 Exports

Top 10

The following export product groups represent the highest dollar value in Ukrainian global shipments during 2017, at the 2-digit Harmonized Tariff System (HTS) code level. Also shown is the percentage share each export category represents in terms of overall exports from Ukraine.

Drilling down to 4-digit HTS codes, Ukraine’s most valuable exported goods are crude sunflower-seed or safflower oil ($3.9 billion) followed by corn ($3 billion), wheat ($2.8 billion) then iron ores and concentrates ($2.6 billion).

  1. Iron, steel: US$8.7 billion (20% of total exports)
  2. Cereals: $6.5 billion (15%)
  3. Animal/vegetable fats, oils, waxes: $4.6 billion (10.6%)
  4. Ores, slag, ash: $2.7 billion (6.3%)
  5. Electrical machinery, equipment: $2.5 billion (5.9%)
  6. Oil seeds: $2.1 billion (4.7%)
  7. Machinery including computers: $1.7 billion (3.9%)
  8. Wood: $1.2 billion (2.8%)
  9. Food industry waste, animal fodder: $1.1 billion (2.4%)
  10. Articles of iron or steel: $894.8 million (2.1%)

Ukraine’s top 10 exports accounted for almost three-quarters (73.6%) of the overall value of its global shipments.

Propelled by iron or titanium ores and concentrates, the ores, slag and ash category was the fastest-growing top 10 category via a 40% increase from 2016 to 2017.

In second place for improving export sales was oil seeds which gained 34.2%.

Exported articles of iron or steel from Ukraine posted the third-fastest gain in value up 29.7%.

Slowest-growing among the top 10 Ukrainian export categories was wood thanks to its tepid 6.6% improvement.


The following types of Ukrainian 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. Iron, steel: US$7.5 billion (Up by 16.8% since 2016)
  2. Cereals: $6.3 billion (Up by 6.8%)
  3. Animal/vegetable fats, oils, waxes: $4.3 billion (Up by 16.9%)
  4. Ores, slag, ash: $2.2 billion (Up by 44.8%)
  5. Oil seeds: $1.7 billion (Up by 40.0%)
  6. Wood: $963.2 million (Up by 2.1%)
  7. Food industry waste, animal fodder: $884.6 million (Up by 6.4%)
  8. Meat: $419.6 million (Up by 36.9%)
  9. Dairy, eggs, honey: $409.9 million (Up by 51.2%)
  10. Inorganic chemicals: $403.7 million (Up by 24.1%)

Ukraine has highly positive net exports in the international trade of iron and steel. In turn, these cashflows indicate Ukraine’s strong competitive advantages under the iron and steel materials category.


Overall Ukraine incurred a -$6 billion trade deficit in 2017, up from -$2.9 billion in red ink one year earlier.

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

  1. Mineral fuels including oil: -US$10.8 billion (Up by 45.4% since 2016)
  2. Machinery including computers: -$4 billion (Up by 27.9%)
  3. Vehicles: -$3.8 billion (Up by 42.3%)
  4. Plastics, plastic articles: -$2 billion (Up by 6.7%)
  5. Electrical machinery, equipment: -$1.6 billion (Up by 40%)
  6. Pharmaceuticals: -$1.6 billion (Up by 10.6%)
  7. Other chemical goods: -$1.1 billion (Up by 14.2%)
  8. Fertilizers: -$993.2 million (Up by 100.8%)
  9. Rubber, rubber articles: -$690.1 million (Up by 16.9%)
  10. Optical, technical, medical apparatus: -$612.3 million (Up by 45.7%)

Ukraine has highly negative net exports and therefore deep international trade deficits for mineral fuels-related products, particularly petroleum gases, refined petroleum oil and coal.


Ukrainian Export Companies

The following companies are selected examples of leading companies headquartered in Ukraine. Wikipedia lists the biggest exporters from Ukraine. Selected examples are shown below:

  • Metinvest (mining, metals)
  • Naftohaz of Ukraine (oil, gas)
  • Aeromeh (aircraft)
  • Azovstal iron and steel works (iron, steel)
  • Bogdan group (automobile maker)
  • Chumak (food processing)
  • EKTA (LED displays, imaging equipment/software)
  • Motor Sich (engines)
  • Ukrainian Automobile Corporation (automobile maker)
  • Ukrtatnafta (refined oil)
  • Zaporizhstal (steel)

Ukraine’s capital city is Kiev.

See also Ukraine’s Top Trading Partners, Ukraine’s Top 10 Imports and Moldova’s Top 10 Exports

Research Sources:
International Monetary Fund, World Economic Outlook Database (GDP based on Purchasing Power Parity). Accessed on September 13, 2018

The World Factbook, Country Profiles, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on September 13, 2018

Trade Map, International Trade Centre. Accessed on September 13, 2018

Investopedia, Net Exports Definition. Accessed on September 13, 2018

Wikipedia, List of the biggest companies of Ukraine. Accessed on September 13, 2018

Wikipedia, List of companies of Ukraine. Accessed on September 13, 2018