German trade surplus shrinks in Ukraine, energy crisis
FRANKFURT: Germany’s much-vaunted trade surplus will shrink in 2022, official data showed on Thursday. As energy prices skyrocketed after the Ukraine war, import costs rose.
Germany exported goods worth 1.56 trillion euros ($1.7 trillion), up 14 percent from the previous year. Federal statistics agency Destatis said in seasonally adjusted numbers.
But imports rose more than 24 percent to 1.48 trillion euros, bringing a trade surplus of 76 billion euros.
Destatis said it was the “lowest surplus” since 2000 and had fallen by more than half compared to last year’s figure of 173.3 billion euros.
The cost of imports has increased dramatically. “Because of the sharp increase in energy prices” after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. said the agency
It was the fifth year in a row that the trade surplus in Europe’s largest economy had narrowed.
The United States remains the top destination for “Germany-made goods” while China is once again the largest source of imports.
Germany, the shrinking export surplus champion, comes at a time of growing concerns about the competitiveness of European firms in the face of U.S. plans. for major subsidy measures to make the economy green
The EU is working on a proposal to combat the threat. This includes possible relaxation of state aid rules.
Germany’s BDI industry association on Thursday called for “Fast and tangible results” on this issue
It also called on the government to implement an EU-level trade agreement with “Major trading partners” such as countries in Latin America, India or Indonesia. to diversify trade relations
“The goal must be to drive the internationalization of the German economy,” he said.