Barcelona (ACN).- Catalan exports to international markets have been growing over the last few years and in 2011 they overtook the amount Catalonia sells to the rest of Spain. Exports abroad represented 52.9% of Catalonia’s external trade, above the 47.1% that was sold to the rest of Spain. This is the main finding of the Catalan Economy Ministry’s report, released this Wednesday and called ‘Catalan external sector: Evolution of the trade with Spain’ (‘Sector exterior català: Evolució del comerç amb Espanya’). The report analyses data since the year 2000. In addition, 2011 is the first time that Catalonia has registered a positive balance of trade, which represented 1.8% of Catalonia’s GDP.
The report indicates that sales to the rest of Spain are stagnating, while in the last few years exports have significantly increased. Until last year, Catalonia’s only years with a positive balance of trade were due to the sales made throughout Spain. However, in 2011, exports were the main reason for the positive balance.
In relation to GDP data regarding demand, in 2000, the positive balance of trade with Spain represented 12.2% of Catalonia’s GDP and the negative balance of trade with international markets was -4.9%. In 2011, the Catalan economy had a trade surplus in both areas: 2.2% of Catalonia’s GDP with the rest of Spain and 1.8% with international markets. Therefore, in total, Catalonia had a 4% surplus taking into account all its external sales.
Additionally, Catalonia’s exports of goods and services (not only industrial exports) increased by 7.5% last year, above the 5.8% average indicated by the IMF. Therefore, the Catalan economy is gaining market share, thanks to the gradual restructuring of its exports to more expansive markets, outside the European Union.