Euskadi’s exports reached pre-crisis levels in May

An important part of the exports is done from Basaya port. / altuna wolf

Sales jumped to 2,171 million euros, up 39.2% from last year

Fernando Segura

Exports became the engine leading the Basque Country to leave the crisis behind. Overseas sales reached 2,171.6 million euros in May, up 39.2% over the same month a year earlier, marking the second-best record since December 2019, according to data prepared by Ustat. For its part, imports rebounded, with a total value of 1.733.8 million, up 62.2%.

The three historical regions give up, for the fourth consecutive month, negative values, and the percentages of increase in their exports are shown, from 29.7% in Djibuzcoa, passing through 35.7% in Alava and up to 50.6% in Bizkaia. In the case of Bizkaia, a 4.5% decrease in energy exports stands out.

In Gipuzkoa, sales of “metals and articles thereof” increased by 45.7%; 29.4% of “Materials, machines and electrical appliances”; and “transport materials” 13.2%.

In Alava, exports are concentrated in “transport materials” and represent 55.2% of the total, with an increase of 20.5%. Similarly, “plastics, rubber and articles thereof” grew by 83.7%, “metals and articles thereof” by 48.1%, and “materials, machinery and electrical appliances” by 45.3%.

Exports in Bizkaia follow the same trend as in other regions, with a more pronounced increase, by 50.6%, as a result of a rise in exports of “transportation materials” (242.3%), of “materials, machinery and electrical appliances” (65.2%), “plastics and rubber.” and articles thereof” (77.1%), “metals and articles thereof” (20.3%). Only four tariff sections have negative growth rates this month, among which “metals and energy products” stand out (-2.4%).

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Exports hit state record in May, up 55%

In May, five countries (Germany, France, the United States, the United Kingdom and Norway) were the main customers of the Basque country, absorbing 48.8% of the total of 1060.2 million. Arrivals to Portugal increased by 63.8%, to France by 36%, to the United Kingdom by 35.2%, to Italy by 25.1%, to Germany by 22.8%, to Belgium by 21.8%, and to the Netherlands by 16.9%. Outside the EU framework, three countries stand out: the United States with an increase of 57.5%, Norway with an increase of 703.6%, and China with an increase of 39.1%.


The cumulative exports until May show a surplus of 2404.1 million euros and the coverage ratio is 130.5%. For the entire first five months of 2021, sales abroad in the Basque Country increased by 25.8% over the same period the previous year, which translates to an additional €2,110.5 million. The volume of exports for this period amounted to 10,281 million, and the largest contribution to this figure was Bizkaia with 40,886 million (39.8% of the total), followed by Jebuzcoa with 3,122 million, and Alfa with 3.069 million.

Biscayan exports recorded a year-on-year increase of 28.3%, an increase of 902.8 million over 2020. In Alava, the growth was higher and reached 34.7%, 791 million more, and in Jibuzcoa it was 15.4%, 416.6 million more.

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