US economic ties with the European Union (27) generate the largest global bilateral trade flows, worth an estimated $2.4 billion per day. The massive volume of US-EU (27) bilateral trade promotes prosperity on both sides of the Atlantic.
In 2015, the total value of US goods and services trade with the EU (27) reached $869.5 billion. The United States had $589.7 billion in total bilateral goods trade with the EU (27), its second largest goods trade partner. US trade in services (exports and imports) with the EU (27) was $279.8 billion.
The EU (27) was the top export market for the US in 2015, at which point exports totaled $377.3 billion. US goods exports to the EU in 2015 amounted to nearly $216 billion, and made up 14.3 percent of total US goods exports in 2015. In addition, US services exports to the EU (27) were almost $160 billion in 2015, up by 10.8 percent compared to 2013.
The EU (27) was the second largest supplier of imports to the United States in 2015, with a total value of $492.2 billion. US imports of goods from the EU (27) reached $372.3 billion in 2015, and increased by 0.7 percent from 2014 levels. US goods imports from the EU (27) accounted for 16.4 percent of overall US goods imports in 2015. US services imports from the EU (27) were $119.9 billion in 2015, up 2 percent from 2014.
The US goods and services trade deficit with the EU (27) was $114.9 billion in 2015. The US goods trade deficit with the EU (27) was $153.7 billion in 2015. At the same time, the US had a services trade surplus of nearly $40 billion with the EU (27) in 2015, up 24.4 percent from 2013.
In 2015, 52,781 US small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) – a number based on those employing fewer than 500 workers, and those in which, the number of employees is unknown – accounted for 97.7 percent of all companies that exported to EU (27). They made up 30 percent of the known export value to EU (27), which totaled up to $62.6 billion. According to the US Trade Commission, although US SMEs saw their merchandise exports to the EU (27) increased considerably in recent years, many SMEs report that EU technical regulations and other trade barriers continue to limit their ability to export to the EU, compared to large corporations.
The EU (27) is a crucial market for US businesses, especially SMEs, and vice versa. Thus, it is vital for the United States and the EU (27) to deepen the transatlantic market place to foster trade and investment. Policymakers on both sides of the Atlantic should set the stage for a new transatlantic economic agreement that builds upon the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership’s (TTIP) framework, but excludes the most divisive issues that halted the TTIP negotiations.
This EconoGraphic is the second of a three-part series on why the United States and Europe need each other. The series will lead up to the upcoming launch of the EuroGrowth Task Force’s report on European economic growth and why it matters to US prosperity. The Global Business & Economics Program will launch this timely report on March 10, 2017 at the Atlantic Council.
Compliments of the Atlantic Council