China Replaces Germany as UK’s Biggest Import Market



Richard Partington | The Guardian

UK trade with the EU collapsed by nearly a quarter at the start of 2021 compared with three years before as Brexit and Covid-19 disruption hit exports, while China replaced Germany as the biggest single import market, according to official figures.

The Office for National Statistics said total trade in goods – which includes imports and exports – with EU countries fell by 23.1% in the first three months of the year, compared with the first quarter of 2018 before the pandemic began and before Brexit uncertainty became marked.

Trade with countries outside the EU fell by just 0.8% over the same period, reflecting the impact of new border checks on exports to the continent under the Brexit deal agreed between Boris Johnson’s government and Brussels.

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