What the ONS report says about trade after Brexit
The Office For National Statistics released its monthly report on trade – for both imports and exports into and out of the United Kingdom. It is a stark reminder of the damage to trade as a direct result of Brexit. The OBR actually concluded:
“The UK appears to have become a less trade-intensive economy, with trade as a share of GDP falling 12% since 2019, two and a half times more than in any other G7 country.”
Briefly, the report says – because of a fall of nearly 41 per cent in exports to the EU, Britain’s global export trade fell an eye-watering 19.3 per cent. With imports, it was a total fall of 21.6 per cent. The combined total trade deficit widened as a result. These falls are the largest ever recorded since records began.
The report summarises by issuing the following main points. No commentary is needed.
- Exports of goods, excluding non-monetary gold and other precious metals, fell by £5.3 billion (19.3%) in January 2021, because of a £5.6 billion (40.7%) fall in exports to the EU.
- Imports of goods, excluding non-monetary gold and other precious metals, fell by £8.9 billion (21.6%) in January 2021, driven by a £6.6 billion (28.8%) fall in imports from the EU.
- Falling imports of goods, excluding non-monetary gold and other precious metals, were largely seen in machinery and transport equipment, and chemicals from the EU in January 2021, particularly in imports of cars and medicinal and pharmaceutical products.
- In both current price and chained volume measures, the January 2021 monthly fall in goods imports and exports are the largest monthly falls seen since records began in January 1997.
- Total imports of goods from non-EU countries, excluding non-monetary gold and other precious metals, fell by £2.4 billion (12.7%) in January 2021 while exports increased by £0.2 billion (1.7%).
- The total trade deficit for January 2021, excluding non-monetary gold and other precious metals, narrowed by £3.7 billion to £1.9 billion; imports decreased by £9.2 billion (17.6%) and exports decreased by £5.5 billion (11.8%).
- The total trade deficit, excluding non-monetary gold and other precious metals, widened by £6.7 billion to £12.8 billion in the three months to January 2021; imports increased by £2.4 billion (1.7%), while exports decreased by £4.3 billion (3.1%).
Read the full analysis and report HERE