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In 2022, the UK’s exports of goods and services totalled £815 billion and imports totalled £902 billion. The EU accounted for 42% of UK exports of goods and services and 48% of imports in 2022.

The UK generally imports more than it exports meaning that it runs a trade deficit. A deficit of £231 billion on trade in goods was offset by a surplus of £144 billion on trade in services in 2022. The overall trade deficit was £87 billion in 2022.

Balance of trade

The UK had a trade deficit with the EU of £92 billion in 2022 and a trade surplus of £5 billion with non-EU countries. 

The trade deficit with all countries increased to £15.9 billion in three months to July 2023 compared with a £12.1 billion deficit in the previous three months. Exports decreased by 2.6% in cash terms over this period while imports decreased by 0.8%.

The current account, which includes investment income and transfers as well as trade, saw a deficit of £94 billion in 2022, compared with £34 billion in 2021. The current account deficit was 3.8% of GDP in 2022 compared with 1.5% in 2021.

The current account deficit widened to £10.8 billion in Q1 2023 (1.7% of GDP), compared with a deficit of £2.5 billion (0.4% of GDP) in Q4 2022. 

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