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Importing and exporting in Spain

Importing and exporting in Spain

Updated on Monday 10th July 2017

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Spain has a developed trade sector that counts for more than a half of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) and the import/export field is a very important part of the economy. The top export products are: cars and vehicle parts, refined petroleum, medicaments, delivery trucks, agricultural products and, on the top of the imported goods, Spain has the following: crude and refined petroleum, iron, steel, vehicle parts and petroleum gas. Companies operating in the import/export sector are required to obtain a set of permits, depending on their specific activities, and our team of lawyers in Spain can offer in-depth advice on the procedures for obtaining such documents. 

Top import/export destinations for Spain 

The top export destinations for Spanish businessmen are: France, Germany, Italy, Portugal and United Kingdom, while countries such as Germany, France, China, Italy and the Netherlands are representing the top import countries. Nearly 70% of the Spanish export goods and products that were traded in 2016 were sold on other European markets, while 11.2% were traded on the Asian markets. 
The financial crisis experienced throughout the European Union affected the Spanish exports as well and they decreased from $285 billion in 2008 to $215.7 billion in 2009, while the imports followed the same trend, decreasing from $415.5 billion in 2008 to $293.2 billion in 2009.
The most important import and export partners of Spain are countries from EU and the Spanish authorities approved regulations related to trade that are similar to those in the EU. However, the value of the trading activities in Spain increased in the last years. For example, in 2016, the value of the imports increased by 1,4% compared to 2015. Also, in 2016, the export activities increased by 29% compared to 2009, when the country was affected by the economic crisis. In 2016, the value of the Spanish exports was situated at $287.8 billion, which represented an increase of 3.5% compared with the previous year. 
Our team of Spanish lawyers can offer more details on the regulations concerning trading activities in Spain
The most imported products in Spain are: fuel (19%), food (7%), machinery (6%) and motor cars (4%).
More details on the import/export activities in Spain are available below:


Who may help you enter the import/export sector?

If you are interested in opening a company in Spain dealing with import/export activities, you may address to one of our Spanish attorneys, who will help you register it and begin your economic activity.

A foreign investor who has already set up a company and wants to extend his/her activity in other countries, like Spain, will discover important opportunities, but it is recommended to know information on the local laws related to the trading sector before starting your expansion and our law firm in Spain may help you with in-depth advice and legal assistance. At the same time, it is recommended to study the characteristics of the local markets and the customers’ needs.   
If you choose to import goods from another EU country, like Spain, a customs entry is not required because the EU countries have a special import legislation, but there are certain restrictions. For more details about the rules for importing/exporting activities in Spain, you may contact our law firm in Spain.



  • Betty 2017-06-19

    I like your website, I verify it for various updates from time to time, as I am interested in knowing more on the business environment in Spain.

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