This note provides some basic statistics on the UK's trade with the EU.

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Supporting documents

This note provides basic figures on UK trade with the EU. The attached Excel spreadsheet (see under Supporting documents) allows for easy access and presentation of detailed 2019 data on UK trade with indiviual EU member states, as well as trade trends between 1999 and 2019.

Main points:

  • The EU, taken as a whole is the UK’s largest trading partner. In 2019, UK exports to the EU were £300 billion (43% of all UK exports). UK imports from the EU were £372 billion (51% of all UK imports).
  • The share of UK exports accounted for by the EU has generally fallen over time from 54% in 2002 to 43% in 2016, though this increased slightly to 45% in 2019.
  • The share of UK imports accounted for by the EU fell from 58% in 2002 to 51% in 2019.
  • The UK had an overall trade deficit of -£72 billion with the EU in 2019. A surplus of £23 billion on trade in services was outweighed by a deficit of -£95 billion on trade in goods.
  • The UK had a trade surplus of £46 billion with non-EU countries. A surplus of £81 billion on trade in services outweighed a deficit of -£35 billion on trade in goods.
  • Services accounted for 43% of the UK’s exports to the EU in 2019. Financial services and other business services (a category which includes legal, accounting, advertising, research and development, architectural, engineering and other professional and technical services) are important categories of services exports to the EU.
  • Wales, followed by Northern Ireland and the North East of England had the highest percentage of goods exports going to the EU of all the countries and regions in the UK in 2019. Northern Ireland followed by the East of England had the  highest proportion of goods imports from the EU.
  • There are currently no tariffs on goods traded between the UK and EU – the UK is scheduled to continue to use the EU’s Common External Tariff until 31 December 2020, when it will be replaced by the UK Global Tariff.

Download the full report

Supporting documents