Malta posts positive trade balance with US

Tuesday, 10th June 2008

Malta posts positive trade balance with US

Ivan Camilleri, Brussels

Malta registered a positive trade balance with the US last year although both exports and imports shrunk drastically when compared to 2000 levels.

Trade statistics issued yesterday by Eurostat, the EU’s statistical arm, prior to today’s EU-US summit being held in Slovenia, showed that last year Malta registered a positive trade balance of €113 million. In fact, last year, Malta exported €241 million in goods and services to the US while importing €128 million.

The situation seven years before was very different. Eurostat said that in 2000 Malta’s exports to the US reached €727 million in value and imports were valued at €393 million, leaving a healthy trade balance of €334 million.

Malta’s trade with the US involves primarily products of ST Microelectronics.

Overall, trade between the EU and the US is growing at a healthy pace. Eurostat said that the most notable feature of EU-US trade in goods over recent years has been the growth in the EU27 surplus, from €32 billion in 2000 to €80 billion last year. This increase in the surplus is due both to an increase in the value of exports to the US (from €238 billion in 2000 to €261 billion in 2007), and to a decrease in the value imports from the US (from €206 billion to €181 billion).

EU trade with the US is dominated by manufactured goods. Last year, more than two-fifths of EU27 trade flows with the US were machinery and vehicles, while chemicals and other manufactured articles each accounted for more than a fifth of imports and exports.

Among the EU member states, Germany was the largest exporter to the US in 2007, with €73 billion in value, followed by the UK (€45 billion), France (€25 billion) and Italy (€24 billion).

The UK (€39 billion) and Germany (€35 billion) were also the largest importers, followed by the Netherlands (€26 billion) and France (€20 billion).

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