Published on Thursday, July 27, 2023 | Updated on Thursday, July 27, 2023

Spain | Recent trends in Spanish exports

During the 2019-2022 period, sales of goods abroad have performed similarly to those seen in the rest of Europe (5.4% vs. 8.1% recorded in Europe), while it is exports of services that have shown the greatest increase (+33.9% in Spain vs. 10.1%).

Key points

  • Key points:
  • 80% of goods exports come from manufacturing, whose growth between 2019 and 2022 was similar to that of the total (+5%).
  • Despite the drag from various factors (such as the automotive sector), by 2022, both production and exports of industrial goods would have recovered or surpassed pre-pandemic levels. Among the sectors that have made significant progress, some have benefited from COVID (such as pharmaceutical specialties), others from the energy transition (electric motors, generators and transformers) or from the collateral effects of the Russian invasion of Ukraine (pesticides and other agrochemicals).
  • As for non-tourist services, although it might be thought that sales of transport services would be positively influenced by the strong increase in tourism and the expansion of digital commerce, it is exports of the rest that have gained more weight. In particular, the main contributors to the increase in this type of activity have been R&D business services, management or foreign trade technicians, as well as insurance and pensions. All of them show growth rates above 30% in the period 2019-2022.
  • Meanwhile, in 1Q23, non-resident consumption in Spain was 38% higher than at the end of 2019. Behind the good performance is the greater recovery of services in European households' spending after the confinement; the preference for destinations that guarantee health security; the increase in the costs of long trips; an evolution of accommodation prices in Spain below that observed in the main competitor countries; and the depreciation of the euro against the dollar.

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