Aeronautics and the new agri-food export record, the causes of the notable increase, which contrasts with the slight drop of 2.5% in exports in Spain

Exports from Andalusia reached the historical record figure of 3,620 million euros in January 2024, which represents an interannual growth of 12.9%, being the best record for a month of January since comparable data exists (1995). With this increase, which contrasts with a drop of 2.5% in all of Spain’s exports (30,144 million), Andalusia advances to second position in the national ranking of exporting region, with 12% of the total, also being the one that grows the most in the seven regions with the most international sales.

The Andalusian foreign sector begins 2024, therefore, with a notable boost, a growth that represents 414 million euros more than the result of January 2023 (3,206 million), the previous record month, which already represented an increase of 6.2% compared to 2022, which also marked a historic figure, with 3,017 million euros.

The main protagonists of this good performance in the first month of 2024 reflect the important productive diversification of the export fabric, which sees its main industrial and agri-food chapters grow. Thus, the aeronautical sector multiplied its bill by 13 compared to January 2023, reaching 476 million euros, and food and beverages reached 1,430 million euros, thanks to an increase of 20.2%. Both have recorded the best month of January since comparable data exists (1995).

The diversification of supply also occurs in the origin and destination of exports: six of the eight Andalusian provinces achieved record exports, and increases were recorded in 22 of the top 25 destination markets.

According to the latest data from Andalucía TRADE, in January Andalusia almost reached trade balance, with a coverage rate of 98.2%, up to 9 points more than that achieved by Spain as a whole (89%), which suffers a deficit of 3,729 millions of euros. This responds to the fact that imports made by Andalusia totaled 3,687 million euros, with a slight increase of 0.4%.

The Andalusian trade balance is greatly influenced because the Region is the main route of entry into Spain for energy products that, although destined for the rest of the country, are included in the Andalusian foreign invoice, so that, if the energy component is not taken into account, Andalusia registers a trade surplus of 1,170 million euros and a coverage rate of 160%, which contrasts with the national deficit of 468 million.

Takeoff of the industry thanks to aeronautics

In the first month of 2024, growth has been recorded in six of the top ten export chapters in Andalusia, with important advances in industrial chapters, among which the aircraft sector stands out, which is placed second in sales and first in growth by multiplying its bill by 13 compared to January 2023, with 476 million euros, 13.1% of the total, and a record figure for a month of January since comparable data exists.

In this industrial area, the increases in the minerals, slag and ash chapters also stand out, seventh, with 118 million euros and an increase of 22.7%; followed by foundry, iron and steel (8th), with 110 million and an increase of 30%; or machines and boilers, tenth, with 66 million euros, 1.8% and 11.3% more.

Agri-food record

At the same time, Andalusia maintains its export drive in the agri-food sector, experiencing a new record of sales in food and beverages in the month of January, with 1,430 million euros, thanks to an increase of 20.2% compared to the same period of the previous, year, which places it as the first exporting Region in Spain with 24% of the national invoice and the one that grows the most of the first four exporters.

In this sense, the historical sales of vegetables stand out especially, which are also placed in first position in the general Andalusian export ranking, with 565 million euros, 15.6% of the total and an increase of 9.1% compared to January 2023; as well as the olive oil record, which added 390 million euros for the first time in the month of January, thanks to a significant increase of 81%, which reinforces its national leadership. This is the best-selling product in Andalusia, which is part of the fats and oils chapter, fourth in the general ranking, with 444 million euros in exports, 12.3%, which grows 72% year-on-year.

For its part, fuel chapters fell, third, greatly affected by fluctuations in the price of energy raw materials, with 465 million euros, 12.8% and 13.6% less; machines (6th chapter), with 124 million, which falls slightly by 1.8%; and copper (9th), with 101 million, which drops 40%. In the agri-food field, fruits fall, with 187 million, 5.2% and a decrease of 4.5% in fifth place.

Advances in diversification

In January 2024, Andalusia shows significant progress in terms of diversification also of the destination of its sales, so that two of the greatest growth in its TOP 10 correspond to non-EU countries, specifically, Morocco, ninth, with 161 million and an increase 37%; and China, tenth, with more than double sales, thanks to an increase of 119% to 128 million euros.

The Region also reinforces its position in the European markets, the main objective of its sales, so that the first three grow: France, with 537 million, 14.8% and an increase of 61%; Germany, with 382 million, 10.5% and an increase of 7.7%; and Portugal, with 312 million, 8.6% and an increase of 5.5%; while Belgium, the fifth market, is the one that is growing the most of the top ten, with almost triple sales (+190%) to 219 million euros. Likewise, among the top five destinations, Italy is fourth with 258 million (7.1% of the total) and a decrease of 12.2%.

Within the top 20 export destinations, Andalusia continues to expand its radius of action with strong growth in Brunei, which jumps to eleventh place, multiplying its sales by more than 54,000 to 77 million euros for the purchase of aircraft; Brazil, which doubles its figure from thirteenth place, with an increase of 104% to 42 million euros; Bahamas, in nineteenth place, which multiplies its figure by more than 1,077 to 26.9 million: or Tunisia, which multiplies its bill by 17 to 24.6 million and is the twentieth market.

Seville, leader and five achieve record sales

During this period, sales grew in six of the eight Andalusian provinces, of which five recorded their best sales for the month of January in their history. Specifically, Seville rises to first position (28.5%), driven by aeronautical sales, so that it registers a record invoice of 1,032 million euros, more than double that of January 2023 (+111%) , with the largest surplus among the provinces, of 506 million, and the highest coverage rate, of 196%.

Almería also achieved historic sales that raised it to third position (17.2% of the total), with 622 million euros, an increase of 2.5%, the second best surplus, of 226 million, and the third best rate of coverage, 157%.

In second and fourth place are, respectively, Cádiz (17.9% of the total) and Huelva (14.2% of the total), provinces affected in their bill by being the entry and exit of energy products. Thus, the province of Cadiz recorded sales of 648 million euros, despite a decrease of 9%, while the province of Huelva added 513 million, 24.6% less.

In fifth position is Córdoba (7.7%), with record sales of 280 million, thanks to an increase of 22.7%, the third best among the provinces, with a surplus of 106 million euros, the third best, and the second best coverage rate, 161%. It is followed by Malaga, with record sales of 261 million euros and an increase of 1.6% and 7.2% in Andalusian exports; while in seventh position is Granada, with historical exports of 140 million euros, 7% more and a trade surplus of 13 million (3.9% of the total); and Jaén has sales of 124 million euros, thanks to the second best growth among the provinces, of 23.6%, and registers a surplus of 22.7 million, with 3.4% of Andalusian sales.

These data derive from the figures of the Foreign Trade Statistics of the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Tourism prepared for Andalusia by the Observatory for the Internationalization of the Andalusian Economy of Andalusia TRADE.