- Year-on-year growth was 2%, well above the average for the euro zone
- 2016 also saw a record number of high-technology industrial exports
For the sixth year in a row, in 2016 Catalonia hit a new all-time record for sales abroad. Catalan companies exported €65.142 billion, up 2% year on year. This growth rate is higher than the average for the euro zone (0.7%), Spain (1.7%), Germany (1.2%) and Italy (1.1%) and contrasts with negative growth in France (-0.9%), the United Kingdom (-0.2%), the United States (-3.2%), China (-6.4%) and Japan (-7.4%).
Exports in 2016 were noteworthy in sectors with high value added, like chemical products (26.1% of the total), capital goods (18.6%) and the automotive sector (15.9%). Sources from the Government of Catalonia affirmed that this positive data is the result of ongoing efforts by the Catalan business fabric, which is one of the most international in the area, fully integrated into global value chains and foreign trade flows.
The €65.142 billion in exports by Catalan companies in 2016 made up 25.6% of all sales abroad from Spain. In fact, according to data published by the Ministry of the Economy and Competitiveness, this makes Catalonia once again the region that exports the most in Spain, ahead of Valencia (11.3%), Madrid (11.1%), Andalusia (10.1%) and the Basque Country (8.5%).
Furthermore, Catalonia also saw a record number of high-technology industrial exports in 2016. According to the Statistical Institute of Catalonia (Idescat), €6.7138 billion were exported in products containing high technology, up 8.9% from the previous year.
This record in high-technology industrial products is mainly due to increased sales of pharmaceutical products, up 7.5% from 2015, which now make up nearly 75% of the total. There has also been a notable increase in sales of computer, electronics and optical equipment, up 13.7%. Catalonia makes up 30.2% of all high-technology industrial exports from Spain.