Norway and fresh salmon dominating EU seafood imports

The European Union continued to be the world’s top trader of seafood last year, with transactions totaling EUR 26.8 billion (USD 29.3 billion), narrowly eclipsing second-placed China’s EUR 25.7 billion (USD 28.1 billion) worth of imports and exports.

Overall, the E.U. supply of seafood reached almost 15 million metric tons (MT) in 2016, of which the bloc consumed more than 12.9 million MT. This level of consumption required the importation of more than 8.8 million MT of seafood, confirmed Manuel Catalan Rodriguez of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (DG MARE).

In value terms, the E.U.’s imports totaled EUR 22.3 billion (USD 24.4 billion), with Norway by far the leading supplier – accounting for 23.7 percent of the value. It was followed by China with 7 percent, and then the United States and Ecuador – both with 4 percent.

Rodriguez highlighted that while E.U. imports comprise “a big range of products from a broad range of suppliers,” fresh chilled salmon represented more than 10 percent of E.U. seafood imports last year.

E.U. seafood exports in 2016 amounted to EUR 4.5 billion (USD 4.9 billion) worth of products.


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