The European Union (EU) is the largest partner for trade in goods with Africa, ahead of China, India, the United States and the United Arab Emirates.
Since 2015, the EU has had a trade in goods surplus with Africa, peaking at 28 billion euros in 2016. However, due to an increase in imports from Africa, this surplus fell to 18 billion euros in 2017, falling further still in 2018 to 1 billion euros, according to the latest data published by the statistical office of the EU (Eurostat).
In 2018, a total of 23 EU Member States had a trade in goods surplus with Africa. The highest was in Belgium (3.8 billion euros), followed by Germany (3.7 billion euros).
By contrast, the five countries that had a trade in goods deficit with Africa were Sweden (23 million euros), Slovenia (171 million euros), Italy (4 billion euros), the United Kingdom (7.4 billion euros) and Spain (9 billion euros).
In 2018, almost 70% of goods exported from the EU to Africa were manufactured goods and over 65 % of goods imported were primary goods (food and drink, raw material and energy).