Machinery and Electrical Appliances
Machinery and machine tools provide the infrastructure for manufacturing and industrial processes. Electrical appliances -also included in that category – serve both industry and individual consumers.
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- EU machinery and appliances exports in 2010: €408 billion
- EU machinery and appliances imports in 2010: €278 billion
Machine manufacturing is a wide and diverse sector supplying the means of production for all parts of the economy in the agricultural, manufacturing, construction and textile sectors.
It is the largest industrial sector in the EU, representing a third of manufacturing processes in the EU and employing directly almost 11 million people. The total output of the sector amounts to over €1,000 billion of value, which constitutes over one-third of world machinery and appliances production. Most of it takes place in Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom and France.
The EU has a substantial trade surplus for machinery and appliances and generates more than one third of world trade for these products. The growth of EU machinery exports is strongly linked to growing levels of economic development around the world. Thanks to its advanced technology and high quality, EU machinery industry is internationally highly competitive.
In the machinery sector, the EU applies very low import duties averaging around 2%. In contrast, countries that represent important emerging markets for the EU still maintain tariffs between 15% and 40% or even higher. However, the main obstacles that EU producers of machinery/appliances have to face relate to customs procedures, burdensome or discriminatory standards and technical regulations. The EU is working to redress these problems through its bilateral trade negotiations and dialogues.