The Leading Export Partners Of Germany

Germany is the third-largest exporter after China and the United States.
Germany is the third-largest exporter after China and the United States.

Germany is the third-largest exporter after China and the United States. In 2018, Germany exported US$1.56 trillion worth of goods, accounting for approximately 8.9% of the total global exports. However, import restriction by the United States and China lowered German exports in the first five months of 2019 by 5% compared to the same period a year before. Approximately 66% of German exports are to European countries, Asia imported 18.1% while North America accounted for 10.4%. Oceania, including Australia, imported the least at 0.9%. The United States has been Germany’s largest market for the past four years since it ousted France from the pole position in 2014.Nevertheless, the two countries have been Germany’s top trading partners since the start of the decade. China is increasingly developing an interest in Germany as the Asian country ousted the United Kingdom to be the third-largest importer of German goods. In 2018, Germany made a deficit trading with China, Vietnam, Bangladesh, the Netherlands, and the Czech Republic, while a surplus trading with the United States, France, United Kingdom, and Spain. The largest trade deficit was with China at US$15.3 billion while the largest surplus was with the United States at US$57.8 billion.

Top Export Partners Of Germany

The United States

The United States is the largest importer of German goods. In 2018, the North American country imported goods worth US$134 billion, representing 8.6% of Germany’s total exports. This is a significant increase compared to US$134 billion in 2013. Germany is the fifth largest exporter to the United States, after China, Mexico, Canada, and Japan. Vehicle and vehicle parts account for a quarter of the exports, while packaged medicaments account for 10%. Other commodities include machinery, chemical products, rubber, foodstuff, metal and plastic, and textiles. Imports from Germany are expected to slow down should the Donald Trump administration go ahead with the proposed stringent taxes and regulations.


France is the largest European importer of German goods and the second-largest in the world after the United States. In 2018, it imported goods worth over $124.4 billion, representing 8% of Germany’s total exports. France has been one of Germany’s top markets since the start of the decade. Exports have grown from $88.4 billion in 2010 to over $124 billion in 2018. Top exports to France are vehicle and vehicle parts, aircraft and aircraft parts, chemicals and pharmaceuticals, metal, rubber, plastic, foodstuff, and minerals. The trade between France and Germany is likely to improve as the United States continues to impose trade restrictions, and the United Kingdom’s impending withdrawal from the European Union.


The effects of China’s rampant economic growth are felt across the world from its neighbors in the East to North America, Europe, and Africa. At the start of the decade, China was the 8th largest market for German goods, but since then, the market has expanded and is currently the third-largest. Nevertheless, China is the largest exporter of goods to Germany. The largest exports to China are vehicle and vehicle parts, aircraft and aircraft parts, packaged medicaments, electronic equipment, and specialized machinery.

Trade with the European Union

The European Union is Germany’s largest trading block. In 2018 the EU accounted for about 59% of Germany’s exports and 66% of its imports. Top EU markets for German goods are France, the Netherlands, Italy, Austria, Poland, Switzerland, Spain, and Belgium. The United Kingdom is the third-largest export market for Germany, but trade between the two countries is expected to slow down after the UK withdraws from the European Union. Germany exports vehicles, machinery, aircraft, pharmaceuticals, and foodstuff.

Germany’s Top Exports

In 2018, Germany’s $1.557 trillion exports represented 35.7% of its overall GDP, a significant drop compared to 41% in 2014. This indicates that Germany is relying less on exports than previously. Germany is the world’s largest exporter of motor vehicles. Five of the ten most valuable vehicle brands are German, and a fifth of the cars exported across the world come from the country. About 58% of German vehicle exports are to European countries while Asia imports 21%, and 16% is exported to North America. The United States is the largest importer of German vehicles accounting for 14%, one percent ahead of the United Kingdom. China is the largest Asian market at 8.6%. Other top exports are machinery and electronics, including computers and engine components, pharmaceutical, aircraft, plastic and rubber, paper, and textile.

The Leading Export Partners Of Germany

RankCountryShare in total export (in %)
1United States8.8%
5United Kingdom6.6%
6Italy 5.1%

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