Catalan exports grow by 13.6% in the first quarter and set new record
Barcelona (ACN).- Catalan exports reached €17.6 billion during the first quarter of 2017, a 13.6% increase in comparison to the same period last year. The figures, published by the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness, are the best in the entire historic series. The exports in Catalonia between January and March 2017 represent 25.3% of the entire amount in Spain. In terms of imports, Catalonia saw in the first quarter an increase of 13.5% year-on-year, to €21.5 billion euros. The Catalan trade deficit was €3.9 billion, 13.5% more than the first quarter of 2016. The main exporting sectors were chemical products, which increased by 10.5% reaching €4.6 billion; manufacturing equipment, with an increase of 6.7% (€3.1 billion); and the automobile sector, which grew by 14% to €2.9 billion. The chemical products (14.5%, €3.9 billion) and automobile sector (8.8%, €3.3 billion) also contributed to the increase in imports.
In March, Catalan companies increased their sales abroad by 17% peaking at €6.7 billion. This is the highest quantity exported in a single month. The imports in March grew by 18.1% (€7.9 billion). Taking into account these figures, the trade balance had a deficit of €1.2 billion in March, 24.8% more than in the same month in 2016.
In Spain, exports from January to March increased by 14.1% reaching €69.7 billion, which was also the best quarter in the historic series. At the same time, imports in Spain grew by 16.5% to €76.9 billion. Therefore, Spain’s trade deficit was set at €7.2 billion for the first three months, a 45.6% increase in comparison with the previous year.
In March, exports of goods in Spain increased by 16.9% in relation to the same month in 2016, reaching €26.2 billion. Imports in March 2017 grew 19.1% in year-on-year terms to €27.7 billion. So, a deficit of 1.5 billion euros was registered in Spain in the month of March, a 83.3% increase compared to the same month last year.
The evolution of Spanish exports between January and March was better than the main economies of the European Union, except the UK, which increased its exports by 21.4%. In the Eurozone, exports grew by 9.5% and in the European Union by 9.7%. Exports also increased in France (4.2%), Germany (8.5%) and Italy (10%). Outside Europe, exports increased in Japan (8.5%), the United States (7.3%) and China (4.2%).