January record month for Catalan exports

Historic 5.8 billion euros of goods sold abroad throughout month, 9% more same period in 2016

Containers at the Port of Barcelona
Containers at the Port of Barcelona / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

March 21, 2018 12:55 PM

January was the best month since records began for Catalan exports, with companies exporting goods at a value of 5.8 billion euros, an increase of 9% from the same period in 2017, according to the latest figures published on Wednesday by Spain’s Ministry of Economy.

This increase demonstrates a continuing of the trend seen throughout last year, when Catalan companies registered a record 70.8 billion euros of sales abroad.

Imported value

The quantity of imports entering the country in the first month of 2018 rose by 12.9% compared to the same period in 2017, also making it the best January since records began. The total worth of goods imported into Catalonia in January was 7.5 million euros, setting the trade deficit at 1.7 billion euros, 28.4% more than the same time last year.

From Catalonia, with love

The increase in exports from Catalan companies is one of the highest in the Eurozone, surpassed only by Italy which saw a rise of 9.5% in exports at the start of the year. In Germany, exports rose by 8.6%, while French exports increased by 8%.

The chemical sector was the biggest exporter, exporting goods at a value of 1.6 billion euros, 14.2% more than 2016.

Equipment goods companies exported to the value of 939.9 million euros, an increase of 3.6%, while the automotive sector exported 921.9 million euros.

A fall in foreign investment

2017, despite being a record year for Catalan exports, with the positive figures continuing into the start of 2018, was not so great in terms of foreign investment in the country.

Foreign investment in Catalonia actually fell by 40% to 3.1 billion euros last year. This significant drop comes after two record years, with 5.4 billion euros invested in 2015, and 5.1 billion euros in 2016.

During the first half of 2017, foreign investment increased by 27% when compared with the same period in 2016. In the second term, however, it decreased by 62%. The biggest drop came between July and September, when foreign investment fell by 75% less than 2016.