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China overtakes US, becomes European Union's biggest trading partner

According to news agency AFP, Britain which is no longer part of the European Union, was the third-largest trading partner for the bloc, behind China and the United States, the agency said

Topics
European Union | China | United States

Agencies 

US, CHINA, united states
The dethroning of the US comes as the EU and China are seeking to ratify a long-negotiated investment deal that would give European companies better access to the Chinese market

last year overtook the as the EU's biggest trading partner, the EU statistics agency Eurostat said on Monday.

According to news agency AFP, Britain which is no longer part of the European Union, was the third-largest trading partner for the bloc, behind and the United States, the agency said.

The supremacy of came after it suffered from the coronavirus pandemic during the first quarter but recovered vigorously with consumption even exceeding its level of a year ago at the end of 2020, AFP said.

This helped drive sales of European products, particularly in the automobile and luxury goods sectors, while China's exports to Europe benefited from strong demand for medical equipment and electronics.

The dethroning of the US comes as the EU and China are seeking to ratify a long-negotiated investment deal that would give European companies better access to the Chinese market.

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Eurostat said the volume with China reached 586 billion euros ($711 billion) in 2020, compared to 555 billion euros ($673 billion) for the US, the news agency said.

The agency said EU exports rose by 2.2 percent to 202.5 billion euros while at the same time, imports from the People's Republic of China increased by 5.6 percent to 383.5 billion euros.

EU exports to the fell by 13.2 per cent in the same period and imports by 8.2 percent.

In addition to the Covid-19 crisis, transatlantic has been impaired by a series of tit-for-tat feuds that have resulted with tariffs being on steel and products such as French champagne or Harley-Davidson motorcycles.

Eurostat said with the UK plummeted in 2020, the year Britain officially left the bloc, though it was in a transition period to blunt the effects of Brexit until December 31. EU exports to the UK fell by 13.2 percent, while imports from across the channel dropped by 13.9 per cent, Eurostat said.

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First Published: Tue, February 16 2021. 00:56 IST
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