Crisis is affecting trade between Spain and Portugal11.02.2013
In contrast to 2010 and 2011, bilateral trade between Portugal and Spain suffered in 2012 due to the crisis that is currently affecting both countries. This became clear from the figures published by the Portuguese National Statistics Institute (INE) that nevertheless also reveals that Spain remains the most important trading partner.
Exports of goods (services not included) from Portugal to Spain shrank by 4.5% in 2012, to 10.194 million euros. However, the sale of products from Portugal to Spain accounted for 22.5% of all Portuguese exports. Exports from Spain to Portugal were reduced even further with 7% to a cost of 17,790 million euros. Spain thus remains the main market for Portuguese goods, well ahead of Germany and France.
During the past few years, bilateral trade between the two countries presented an upward trend, which was not affected in 2010 and 2011, with the economic crisis present throughout all of Europe. The trade deficit (i.e., the difference between what it sells and what it buys) from Portugal to Spain was thus reduced by 10% last year, to 7.596 million euros.
Increase exports and reduce imports are currently priorities of the Portuguese government, which is promoting the consumption of domestic products and is looking to increase sales, especially to non-EU countries such as Angola and Brazil. Exports to Angola grew by 21.3%, adding up to nearly 3,000 million euros, while sales to Brazil increased by 5.2 percent to 680 million euros. Portugal also increased its exports to the U.S. (+14.2%) and China (+5.9%), which were valued at 1,800 and 780 million euros respectively.