New record for Catalan exports in 2016, exceeding 65 billion
Barcelona (CNA).- Exports from companies based in Catalonia reached €65.14 billion in 2016, a 2% increase compared to the same period last year. This growth is also higher than that registered in the whole of Spain (1.7%) and the Eurozone (0.17%), according to data released by the Spanish Ministry for Economy and Competitiveness. Moreover, for the sixth consecutive year, Catalan exports set a new record and confirm Catalonia as the territory which exports the most in the whole of Spain, concentrating 25.6% of the total. This good trend is the result of “the persistent and permanent efforts of Catalan companies, which are amongst the most internationalised in our environs”, explained Catalan Secretary for Business and Competitiveness, Joan Aregio. Regarding Catalonia’s imports, they totalled €77.8 billion in 2016, a 2.4% growth in comparison to 2015. Thus, Catalonia’s trade deficit went up, reaching €12.6 billion, 4% more than in the same period last year.
Aregio also emphasised the Government’s contribution to the these good figures, since 1 out of every 3.2 euros in the increased exports came from projects managed by ACCIÓ, the public business competitiveness and internationalisation agency.
The Catalan economy “has looked abroad for centuries”, explained the Catalan Secretary for Business and Competitiveness and added that “the more competitive the world is, the more internationalised Catalan companies are”. He also pointed out that SMEs “have proved once again that they are perfectly integrated within the global network and international trade”.
The sector which contributed the most to the growth registered in 2016 was equipment goods, which registered a 10.4% in comparison to the previous year, totalling €12 billion, while chemical products, which represent one of the sectors which exports the most, posted a 1.3% increase in 2016, reaching €16.9 billion. On the other hand, exports in the automotive sector saw a slight 0.4% decrease. Aregio emphasised not only the “competitiveness of these sectors, which contribute to Catalonia’s industrial network” but their “added value, based on innovation”.
Imports also grew in 2016
Regarding Catalonia’s imports, they totalled €77.8 billion in 2016, a 2.4% growth in comparison to the previous year. Indeed, 28.5% of the imports registered in the whole of Spain were made in Catalonia. Thus, Catalonia’s trade deficit went up, reaching €12.6 billion, 4% more than in the same period last year.
Spain’s trade deficit decreased
Exports in the whole of Spain also reached a historic record and totalled €254.5 billion, posting a 1.7% increase in comparison to 2015. On the other hand, and as opposed to what happened in Catalonia, imports went slightly down, falling by 0.4% and totalling €273.2 billion. Thus, Spain’s trade deficit is the second-best figure since 2013, only beaten by 1997.