WTO Statistical data sets -
I. Data set
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II. General information on data
(i) Minor discrepancies between constituent figures and totals are
due to rounding;
value figures are expressed in United
figures include the intra-trade of free trade areas, customs unions, regional
and other country groupings;
(iv) Data for the latest year are
Time series notes - Category description
Information on geographical
coverage, on commodity coverage and on the inclusion of special trade zones
(e.g. processing zones).
Specifies any deviation
from the default "General trade" system.
Method of valuation
Identifies import values reported
on a free on board (f.o.b.) basis.
Extracting intra-trade or extra-trade time series
- To get extra-trade values for a selected regional integration agreement, select the partner "Extra-trade". For example,
when NAFTA is selected within the "Selected regional integration
agreement" data set, choose the partner "Extra-trade" to get
- To get intra-trade values for a selected regional integration agreement, choose as partner the
same group as for the reporter. For example, choose NAFTA as reporter and as
partner to get its intra-trade values.
Value flag codes
Break in data
continuity. Data beginning with the
highlighted year do not form a consistent series with those from earlier
Coverage difference. May
cover transactions belonging to other services items.
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III. Composition of reporter and partner groups
III. 1 Regions
North America: Bermuda, Canada, Mexico, United States of America and other
territories in the region
not elsewhere specified.
South and Central
America (including the Caribbean): Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Aruba (the Netherlands with respect
to), Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bolivia Plurinational State of, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Curaçao, Dominica, Dominican
Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras,
Jamaica, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia,
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sint Maarten, Suriname, Trinidad
and Tobago, Uruguay, Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), and other territories
in the region not elsewhere specified.
Europe: Albania, Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and
Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia,
Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia,
Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia,
Malta, Montenegro, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia,
Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom
and other territories in the region not elsewhere specified.
The Commonwealth of Independent
States (CIS): Armenia,
Kyrgyz Republic, Moldova, Russian Federation, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan and
other territories in the region not elsewhere specified.
Africa, of which North Africa:
Algeria, Egypt, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Morocco and Tunisia; and Sub-Saharan Africa comprising: Western Africa: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Côte d'Ivoire, The Gambia, Ghana,
Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal,
Sierra Leone and Togo; Central Africa: Burundi, Cameroon, Central African
Republic, Chad, Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea,
Gabon, Rwanda, and Sao Tome and Principe; Eastern
Africa: Comoros, Djibouti,
Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles, Somalia, Sudan,
Tanzania and Uganda; and Southern Africa:
Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa,
Swaziland, Zambia, Zimbabwe ; and other territories in the region not elsewhere specified.
East: Bahrain, Iraq, Islamic
Republic of Iran, Israel,
Saudi Arabia Kingdom of, Syrian Arab
Republic, United Arab Emirates,
and other territories in the region not elsewhere specified.
Asia, of which West
Asia: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and
Sri Lanka; and East Asia (including
Oceania): Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, China, Fiji, Hong Kong
Special Administrative Region of China (Hong Kong, China), Indonesia, Japan,
Kiribati, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Macau China, Malaysia, Mongolia,
Myanmar, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Samoa,
Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu (Taipei,
Chinese), Singapore, Solomon Islands, Thailand, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, Viet
Nam and other territories in the region not elsewhere
III. 2 Regional integration agreements
Community): Bolivia, Colombia,
ASEAN (Association of
South-East Asia Nations): Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia,
Lao People's Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam.
CACM (Central American Common
Market): Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala,
Honduras and Nicaragua.
CARICOM (Caribbean Community and Common Market): Antigua and Barbuda,
Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica,
Montserrat, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the
Grenadines, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago.
CEMAC (Economic and Monetary Community of Central Africa): Cameroon, Central African Republic,
COMESA (Common Market for Eastern and Southern
Africa): Burundi, Comoros, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Egypt,
Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Libyan Arab
Jamahiriya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Rwanda, Seychelles, Sudan, Swaziland,
Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
ECCAS (Economic Community of Central African
States): Angola, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo,
Democratic Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Rwanda and Sao Tome
ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African
States): Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Côte d'Ivoire, The Gambia, Ghana,
Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and
EFTA (European Free Trade Association): Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.
EU15 (European Union
15): Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and the United
EU25 (European Union
25): Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Czech
Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland,
Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal,
Slovenia, Slovak Republic, Spain, Sweden and the United
EU28 (European Union
28): Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria,
Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany,
Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta,
Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain,
Sweden and the United Kingdom.
GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council): Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and
United Arab Emirates.
MERCOSUR (Southern Common
Market): Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela
(Bolivarian Republic of).
NAFTA (North American
Free Trade Agreement): Canada, Mexico and the United States of America.
SAARC (South Asian Association for Regional
Cooperation)/SAPTA (South Asian Preferential Trade Agreement): Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
SADC (Southern African Development Community): Angola, Botswana, Democratic
Republic of the Congo, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique,
Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
WAEMU (West African Economic and Monetary Union): Benin,
III. 3 Other reporter and partner groups
ACP (Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Countries): Angola, Antigua and
Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon,
Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Congo, Democratic Republic
of the Congo, Cook Islands, Côte d'Ivoire, Cuba, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican
Republic, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Fiji, Gabon, The Gambia, Ghana,
Grenada, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Kenya, Kiribati,
Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Marshall Islands, Mauritania,
Mauritius, Micronesia, Mozambique, Namibia, Nauru, Niger, Nigeria, Niue, Palau,
Papua New Guinea, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and
the Grenadines, Samoa, Sao Tome and Principe, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra
Leone, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland,
Tanzania, Timor Leste, Togo, Tonga, Trinidad and
Tobago, Tuvalu, Uganda, Vanuatu, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Economic Co-operation): Australia, Brunei
Darussalam, Canada, Chile, China, Hong Kong, China, Indonesia, Japan, Republic
of Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines,
Russian Federation, Singapore, Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu,
Kinmen and Matsu (Taipei, Chinese), Thailand, United States of America and Viet
Least-developed countries: Afghanistan, Angola,
Bangladesh, Benin, Bhutan, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Central African
Republic, Chad, Comoros, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Equatorial
Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, The Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Kiribati,
Lao People's Democratic Republic, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi,
Maldives, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nepal, Niger, Rwanda, Sao Tome
and Principe, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Somalia, Sudan, Tanzania, Timor Leste, Togo, Tuvalu, Uganda, Vanuatu,
Yemen and Zambia.
Four East Asian traders: Hong Kong,
China, Republic of Korea, Singapore and
Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu,
Kinmen and Matsu (Taipei,
Six East Asian traders: Hong Kong, China, Malaysia,
Republic of Korea, Singapore, Separate Customs Territory of
Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu (Taipei, Chinese), and Thailand.
III. 4 Disclaimer
The word "reporter" refers to a "country" or
"customs territory" that reports trade flows with its partners by
origin and destination.
WTO members are frequently referred to as "country",
although some members are not countries in the usual sense of the word but are
officially "customs territories". The definition of geographical and
other groupings in this report does not imply an expression of opinion by the
Secretariat concerning the status of any country or territory, the delimitation
of its frontiers, nor on the rights and obligations of any WTO Member in
respect of WTO Agreements.
South and Central America and the Caribbean is referred to South and
Central America, the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, the Republic of Korea
and the Separate Customs Territory of Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu are
referenced as Bolivarian Rep. of Venezuela, Korea, Republic of and Taipei,
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All product groups are defined according to Revision 3
of the Standard International Trade Classification (SITC).
IV.1 Primary products
Agricultural products (SITC sections 0, 1, 2,
4 minus 27 and 28)
- Food: food
and live animals, beverages and tobacco, animal and vegetable oils, fats and
waxes, oilseeds and oleaginous fruit (SITC sections 0, 1, 4 and division 22),
(SITC division 03), and
-- Other food
products and live animals, beverages and tobacco, animal and vegetable oils,
fats and waxes, oilseeds and oleaginous fruit (SITC sections 0, 1, 4 and
division 22 less division 03).
- Raw materials: hides, skins and furskins, raw, crude rubber (including synthetic and
reclaimed), cork and wood, pulp and waste paper, textile fibres and their
wastes, crude animal and vegetable materials, n.e.s.
(SITC divisions 21, 23, 24, 25, 26, 29).
(ii) Fuels and
- Ores and other minerals: crude
fertilizers (other than those classified in chemicals) and crude minerals,
metalliferous ores and metal scrap (SITC divisions 27, 28).
(SITC section 3).
- Non-ferrous metals: (SITC division 68).
IV.2 Manufactures: (SITC sections 5, 6,
7, 8 minus division 68 and group 891)
Iron and steel: (SITC division 67).
(ii) Chemicals: (SITC section 5), of which:
(SITC division 54), and
chemicals: organic chemicals (SITC division 51), plastics (SITC divisions 57,
58), inorganic chemicals (SITC division 52), other chemicals n.e.s. (SITC divisions 53, 55, 56, 59).
semi-manufactures: leather, leather
manufactures, n.e.s., and dressed furskins,
rubber manufactures, n.e.s., cork and wood
manufactures (excluding furniture), paper, paperboard and articles of paper
pulp, of paper or of paperboard, non-metallic mineral manufactures, n.e.s., manufactures of metals, n.e.s.
(SITC divisions 61, 62, 63, 64, 66, 69).
(iv) Machinery and transport equipment: (SITC section 7), of which:
- Office and
telecommunications equipment: office machines and automatic data processing
machines, telecommunications and sound recording and reproducing apparatus and
equipment, thermionic, cold cathode or photo-cathode valves and tubes (SITC
divisions 75, 76 and group 776), of which:
data processing and office equipment (SITC division 75),
equipment (SITC division 76), and
circuits, and electronic components (SITC group 776).
equipment (SITC group 713, sub-group 7783, groups 78 and 79), of which:
products: motor cars and other motor vehicles principally designed for the
transport of persons (other than public transport type vehicles) including
station wagons and racing cars, motor vehicles for the transport of goods and
special purpose motor vehicles, road motor vehicles, n.e.s.,
parts and accessories of motor vehicles and tractors, internal combustion
piston engines for vehicles listed above, electrical equipment, n.e.s., for internal combustion engines and vehicles, and
parts thereof (SITC groups 781, 782, 783, 784, and subgroups 7132, 7783), and
transport equipment: railway vehicles, aircraft, spacecraft, ships and
boats, and associated parts and equipment, motorcycles and cycles, motorized
and non-motorized, trailers and semi-trailers, other vehicles (not mechanically
propelled), and specially designed and equipped transport containers, internal
combustion piston engines for aircraft, and parts thereof, n.e.s.,
internal combustion piston engines, marine propulsion, internal combustion
piston engines, n.e.s., parts, n.e.s.,
for internal combustion piston engines listed above (SITC division 79, groups
713, 785, 786 minus sub-group 7132).
- Other machinery
(SITC divisions 71, 72, 73, 74, 77 minus groups 713, 776 and minus sub-group
7783), of which:
generating machinery: power generating machinery and equipment minus
internal combustion piston engines and parts thereof, n.e.s.
(SITC division 71 minus group 713),
machinery: machinery specialized for particular industries, metalworking
machinery, general industrial machinery and equipment, n.e.s.,
and machine parts, n.e.s. (SITC divisions 72, 73,
machinery: electrical machinery, apparatus and appliances, n.e.s., and electrical parts thereof, minus thermionic,
cold cathode or photo-cathode valves and tubes, minus electrical equipment, n.e.s., for internal combustion piston engines and parts
thereof, n.e.s. (SITC division 77 minus group 776 and
(v) Textiles: (SITC division 65).
(vi) Clothing: (SITC division 84).
manufactures: (SITC divisions 81, 82, 83, 85,
87, 88, 89 excluding group 891), of which:
- Personal and
household goods: furniture (SITC division 82), travel goods (SITC division
83) and footwear (SITC division 85),
- Scientific and
controlling instruments (SITC division 87), and
manufactures: instruments and apparatus, photography, optical goods, watches
and clocks, toys and games, and other manufactured articles, n.e.s. (SITC divisions 81, 88, 89 minus group 891).
IV. 3 Other products: commodities and transactions not classified
elsewhere (including gold), arms and ammunition (SITC section 9 and group
It should be noted that other food products and live
animals, beverages and tobacco, animal and vegetable oils, fats and waxes,
oilseeds and oleaginous fruit are referred to as other food products,
electronic data processing and office equipment is referred to as EDP and office equipment, and integrated circuits
and electronic components is referred to as integrated circuits.
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V. Definitions and methods by data set
V. 1 Merchandise trade
Two systems of recording merchandise exports and
imports are in common use. They are referred to as general trade and special
trade and differ mainly in the way warehoused and re-exported goods are
treated. General trade figures are larger than the corresponding special trade
figures because the latter exclude certain trade flows, such as goods shipped
through bonded warehouses.
To the extent possible, total merchandise trade is
defined according to the general trade definition. It covers all types of
inward and outward movement of goods through a country or territory including
movements through customs warehouses and free zones. Goods include all
merchandise that either add to or reduce the stock of material resources of a
country by entering (imports) or leaving (exports) the country's economic
territory. For further explanations, see United Nations International Trade
Statistics, Concepts and Definitions, Series M, No 52, Revision 2.
Unless otherwise indicated, exports are valued at
transaction value, including the cost of transportation and insurance to bring
the merchandise to the frontier of the exporting country or territory
("free on board" valuation). Unless otherwise indicated, imports are
valued at transaction value plus the cost of transportation and insurance to
the frontier of the importing country or territory ("Cost insurance and
It should be noted that due to the use of the general
system for recording merchandise trade statistics, re-exports are included in
total merchandise trade. However, in the case of Hong-Kong, China the magnitude
of its re-exports (amounting in 2014 to $508 billion), if included in regional
or world aggregates, would introduce a significant element of double counting.
re-exports are excluded from the World and Asia aggregates.
China reports imports from China (re-imports), a trade flow which accounted for
7.4 per cent ($144.6 billion) of its total merchandise imports in 2014. These
imports consist of products which have been produced in China and thereafter
temporarily exported. The product structure of China’s imports from China
indicates that in absolute terms office and telecom equipment is the largest
category ($88.5 billion) in this particular trade flow.
Specific notes for selected economies
Merchandise trade statistics of
the European Union
Beginning with the 2002 report, EU data compiled
according to national statistical practices have been replaced, starting 1993,
with data compiled by Eurostat in accordance with EU legislation. The concepts
and definitions adopted by the EU are in line with the United Nations’
International Trade Statistics, Concepts and Definitions, Series M, N° 52,
Revision 2. As a result, the conceptual differences between EU member states’
data have been substantially reduced. Moreover, for the EU as a whole, Eurostat
data are more timely than the previous source, thus
reducing substantially the amount of estimation included in the EU aggregate.
Since January 1993, statistics on the trade between the member
states of the EU have been collected through the “Intrastat” system (see GATT 1994, International Trade Trends and
Statistics). The coverage of this system, which relies on reports submitted by
firms for transactions above a minimum value, is not as wide as the previous
one, which was based on customs declarations. This is particularly noticeable
on the import side. For example, prior to the adoption of the Intrastat system, reported intra-EU imports (c.i.f.) closely
matched reported intra-EU exports (f.o.b.). However, from 1993 onwards, the
reported value of intra-EU imports has been on average around 3 per cent lower
than the value of intra-EU exports, indicating a substantial under-reporting of
intra-EU imports. As a result of this inconsistency, the Secretariat has
substituted intra-EU exports data for intra-EU imports at the aggregate EU
level when estimating regional and world totals. However, this adjustment is
not allocated between EU member countries. Hence, the sum of reported imports
of individual EU members does not add to the figure for EU imports as a whole.
This adjustment is also reflected in the volume estimates for the EU as a whole.
Major breaks in data
Beginning 2003, Singapore includes merchandise
trade with Indonesia.
Beginning 2008, Indonesia’s imports are reported
according to the general trade system.
With respect to the Russian
Federation, considerable uncertainty remains
about the accuracy of foreign trade statistics, especially as regards imports.
A large proportion of the reported data on imports consists of official
estimates of inflows of goods which enter the economy without being registered
by the customs authorities. Such adjustments to import data accounted for 8 per
cent of the officially reported totals in 2013.
Merchandise trade flows between the European Union
member States include trade associated with fraudulent VAT declaration, which concerns
mainly office and telecommunications equipment. Between 2006 and 2007, intra-EU
merchandise trade statistics have been particularly affected by a considerable
reduction in this fraudulent trade in the United Kingdom.
As of 2012, data for Switzerland includes trade in gold.
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V. 2 Merchandise trade by commodity
Product data are generally sourced from UNSD Comtrade and Eurostat. Only selected products specified in Section IV are available.
The sum of agricultural products, mining products and
manufactures does not add up to total merchandise due to unspecified products.
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V. 3 Network of world merchandise trade
The world merchandise
trade network by product and region is based on export data. It is constructed
in the following way:
merchandise exports from each of the seven regions are aggregated from
individual country figures.
Next, the total
merchandise exports of each region are distributed by destination and then by
product. The regional and commodity breakdown is based on UNSD Comtrade database, EUROSTAT, national statistics
and Secretariat estimates.
It should be noted that World, Asia and four East Asian traders totals do not include Hong-Kong,China's re-exports as in the "Total merchandise
trade" data set. (see Section V. I.).
The network is only available for
selected product aggregates and regional groupings (see
adjustments to the figures are as follows:
Exports of ships to the open registry countries Panama and Liberia are
reallocated from each region's exports to Latin America and Africa to
"unspecified destinations" (a category not shown separately),
(ii) China's exports
are adjusted to approximate their final destination,
(iii) Exports of non-monetary
gold, where known, are included. When they cannot be broken down by
destination, they are allocated to "unspecified destinations",
(iv) South Africa's
trade does not include trade with the former Southern African Customs Union
(v) Estimates for the Middle East include unrecorded
re-exports of the United Arab Emirates which accounted for 6 per cent of the
region's total exports in 2013.
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V. 4 (a) Trade in commercial
services, 2005-onwards (BPM6)
Depending on the location of the supplier and the consumer, the General
Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) defines four modes of supply. In addition
to the cross-border supply (mode 1), where both the supplier and the consumer
remain in their respective home territories, GATS also covers cases where
consumers are outside their home territory to consume services (mode 2 –
consumption abroad), or where service suppliers are in the territory of the
consumers to provide their services, whether by establishing affiliates through
direct investment abroad (mode 3 – commercial presence), or through the
presence of natural persons (mode 4).
An economy's Balance of Payments, namely the services account, can be
used to derive estimates covering trade in commercial services for modes 1, 2
and 4. The Balance of Payments does however not include most of the information
on services supplied through foreign affiliates that is required to estimate
the size of mode 3. A framework for collecting these data, the “Foreign
Affiliates Statistics (FATS)” was adopted by the international statistical
community for the first time in 2002, and then further developed in 2010. FATS are available in the annual publication
International Trade Statistics and on the online tool ITIP services.
(credits or receipts) and imports (debits or payments) of commercial services
are included in balance of payments statistics, in conformity with the
concepts, definitions and classification of the sixth (2009) edition of the IMF
Balance of Payments and International Investment Position Manual (BPM6) as well
as the 2010 edition of the Manual on Statistics of International Trade in
Services (MSITS 2010).
of commercial services in the Balance of Payments
sixth edition of the Balance of Payments Manual, the current account is
subdivided into goods, services (including government goods and services, n.i.e.), primary income, and secondary income. Commercial
services comprise all services categories except government goods and services,
n.i.e. Commercial services are sub-divided into
manufacturing services on physical inputs owned by others, maintenance and
repair services n.i.e., transport, travel, and other
commercial services. The BPM6 contains the
following 12 standard services components.
(1) Manufacturing services on physical inputs owned
(2) Maintenance and repair services, n.i.e.
(6) Insurance and pension services
(7) Financial services
(8) Charges for the use of intellectual property, n.i.e.
(9) Telecommunications, computer and information services
(10) Other business services
(11) Personal, cultural and recreational services
(12) Government goods and services, n.i.e.
Manufacturing services on physical inputs owned by others cover processing,
assembly, labelling, packing, and similar activities undertaken by enterprises
that do not own the goods concerned and are paid a fee by the owner. Only the fee charged by
the processor, which may cover the cost of materials purchased, is included
under this item. Examples include oil refining, liquefaction of natural gas,
assembly of clothing and electronics, assembly, labelling, and packing.
Maintenance and repair
services n.i.e. cover
maintenance and repair work - by
residents - on goods that are owned by non-residents (and vice versa). The
repairs may be performed at the site of the repairer or elsewhere. The value
recorded for maintenance and repairs is the value of the work done — not the
gross value of the goods before and after repairs.
Manufacturing services on physical inputs owned by
others and Maintenance and repair services n.i.e. form a new WTO aggregate named Goods-related
Transport is the process of carriage of people and objects
from one location to another as well as related supporting and auxiliary
services. Transport can be classified according to: (i)
mode of transport, namely, sea, air, or other (“other” may be further broken
down into rail, road, internal waterway, pipeline, and space transport as well
as electricity transmission); and (ii) what is carried — passengers or freight.
Also included are postal and courier services.
Travel credits cover goods and
services - for own use or to give away - acquired by non-residents from an
economy during visits to that economy. Travel debits cover goods and services -
for own use or to give away - acquired from other economies by residents of the
reporting economy during visits to these other economies. The most common goods and services covered are lodging, food and
beverages, entertainment and transportation (within the economy visited), gifts
and souvenirs. Travel is further subdivided
into: (i) personal travel and (ii) business travel.
The aggregate category Other commercial
services corresponds to the following components defined in BPM6:
Construction covers the creation, renovation, repair, or extension of fixed assets
in the form of buildings, land improvements of an engineering nature, and other
similar engineering constructions such as roads, bridges, dams, and so forth.
It also includes related installation and assembly work, site preparation,
specialized services such as painting, plumbing, and demolition, and management
of construction projects. Construction also covers the acquisition of goods and
services by the enterprises undertaking construction work from the economy of
location of the construction work. Construction can be divided into (i) construction abroad and (ii) construction in the
Insurance and pension
services include services of
providing life insurance and annuities, nonlife insurance, reinsurance, freight
insurance, pensions, standardized guarantees, and auxiliary services to
insurance, pension schemes, and standardized guarantee schemes.
financial intermediary and auxiliary services, except insurance and pension
fund services, provided by banks and other financial corporations. They include
deposit taking and lending, letters of credit, credit card services,
commissions and charges related to financial leasing, factoring, underwriting,
and clearing of payments. Also included are financial advisory services,
custody of financial assets or bullion, financial asset management, monitoring
services, liquidity provision services, risk assumption services other than
insurance, merger and acquisition services, credit rating services, stock
exchange services, and trust services. Financial services may be charged for
by: (i) explicit charges; (ii) margins on buying and
selling transactions; (iii) asset management costs deducted from property
income receivable in the case of asset-holding entities; or (iv) margins
between interest payable and the reference rate on loans and deposits (called
financial intermediation service charges indirectly measured - FISIM).
the use of intellectual property n.i.e. include: (i) Charges
for the use of proprietary rights (such as patents, trademarks, copyrights,
industrial processes and designs including trade secrets, franchises); these
rights can arise from research and development, as well as from marketing; and
(ii) Charges for licenses to reproduce or distribute (or both) intellectual
property embodied in produced originals or prototypes (such as copyrights on
books and manuscripts, computer software, cinematographic works, and sound
recordings) and related rights (such as for live performances and television,
cable, or satellite broadcast).
computer and information services cover (i)
services, which encompass the broadcast or transmission of sound, images, data,
or other information by telephone, telex, telegram, radio and television cable
transmission, radio and television satellite, electronic mail, facsimile, and
so forth, including business network services, teleconferencing, and support
services; (ii) Computer services consisting of hardware- and software-related
services and data-processing services; (iii) Information services including
news agency services, such as the provision of news, photographs, and feature
articles to the media as well as database services.
Other business services include (i) Research and development
services, (ii) Professional and management consulting services and (iii)
Technical, trade-related and other business services. (i)
development services consist of services that are associated with basic and
applied research, and experimental development of new products and processes.
(ii) Professional and management consulting services include (a) legal
services, accounting, management consulting, managerial services, and public
relations services; and (b) advertising, market research, and public opinion
polling services. (iii) Technical, trade-related, and other business services
include: (a) architectural, engineering, and other technical services; (b)
waste treatment and depollution, agricultural, and mining services; (c)
operating leasing services; (d) trade-related services; and (e) other business
cultural, and recreational services consist of (i) Audiovisual and related services and (ii) other personal,
cultural, and recreational services. (i) Audiovisual and related services cover services and fees related
to the production of motion pictures (on film, videotape, disk, or transmitted
electronically, etc.), radio and television programs (live or on tape), and
musical recordings. (ii) Other personal, cultural, and recreational services
include (a) health services, (b) education services, (c) heritage and
recreational services, and (d) other personal services. Health services as well
as education services are provided remotely or on-site. Data on exports and
imports of total services (including government goods and services n.i.e), other services (including government goods and
services n.i.e) as well as government goods and
services n.i.e. are available as memorandum items in
the WTO online Statistics Database.
-Total services (Commercial services plus
Government goods and services n.i.e)
-Other services (Other commercial services plus
Government goods and services n.i.e)
-Government goods and services n.i.e
goods and services n.i.e. cover: (a) goods and services supplied by and to
enclaves, such as embassies, military bases, and international organizations;
(b) goods and services acquired from the host economy by diplomats, consular
staff, and military personnel located abroad and their dependents; (c) services
supplied by and to governments and not included in other categories of
While several economies worldwide have fully implemented
the BPM6 for the recording of their Balance of Payments services transactions,
others are still compiling their statistics according to the BPM5 methodology.
Therefore, comparability and coverage of data may not always be complete. It
should be noted in particular that world and regional estimates of trade in new
services items such as Manufacturing services on
physical inputs owned by others and Maintenance and repair services n.i.e. may be underestimated, as some economies do not
report these items yet.
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V. 4 (b) Trade in commercial services, 1980-2013 (BPM5)
Depending on the
location of the supplier and the consumer, the General Agreement on Trade in
Services (GATS) defines four modes of supply. In addition to the cross-border
supply (mode 1), where both the supplier and the consumer remain in their
respective home territories, GATS also covers cases where consumers are outside
their home territory to consume services (mode 2 – consumption abroad), or
cases where service suppliers are in the territory of the consumers to provide
their services, whether by establishing affiliates through direct investment
abroad (mode 3 – commercial presence), or through the presence of natural
persons (mode 4).
A country’s balance
of payments, that is the services account, can be used to derive estimates
covering trade in commercial services for modes 1,2
and 4. The Balance of Payments does however not include most of the information
on the local deliveries of services through foreign affiliates that is required
to estimate the size of mode 3. A framework for collecting these data, the
“Foreign Affiliates Trade in Services (FATS) statistics”, has been developed
and adopted by the international statistical community in 2002. Further
information on these “new” statistics is available in the International Trade
Exports and imports
Exports (credits or receipts) and
imports (debits or payments) of commercial services derived from statistics on
international service transactions are included in the balance of payments statistics,
in conformity with the concepts, definitions and classification of the fifth
(1993) edition of the IMF Balance of Payments Manual.
Definition of commercial services
in the balance of payments
In the fifth edition of the
Balance of Payments Manual, the current account is subdivided into goods,
services (including government services, n.i.e.),
income (investment income and compensation of employees), and current
transfers. The commercial services category is defined as being equal to
services minus government services, n.i.e. Commercial
services is further sub-divided into transportation services, travel, and other
Transportation Services covers sea, air and
other including land, internal waterway, space and pipeline transport services
that are performed by residents of one economy for those of another,
and that involve the carriage of passengers, the movement of goods (freight),
rentals (charters) of carriers with crew, and related supporting and auxiliary
Travel includes goods and
services acquired by personal travellers, for health, education or other
purposes, and by business travellers. Unlike other services, travel is not a
specific type of service, but an assortment of goods and services consumed by
travellers. The most common goods and services covered are lodging, food and
beverages, entertainment and transportation (within the economy visited), gifts
Other commercial services corresponds to the following
components defined in BPM5:
services includes telecommunication, postal and
courier services. Telecommunication services encompasses the transmission of
sound, images or other information by telephone, telex, telegram, radio and
television cable and broadcasting, satellite, electronic mail, facsimile
services etc., including business network services, teleconferencing and
support services. It does not include the value of the information transported.
Also included are cellular telephone services, Internet backbone services and
on-line access services, including provision of access to the Internet,
covers work performed on construction projects and installation by employees of
an enterprise in locations outside the territory of the enterprise (the
one-year rule to determine residency is to be applied flexibly). In addition goods used by construction
companies for their projects are included which implies that the
"true" services component tends to be overestimated,
(3) Insurance services covers the provision of various types of
insurance to non residents by resident insurance
enterprises, and vice versa, for example, freight insurance, direct insurance
(e.g. life) and reinsurance,
(4) Financial services covers financial intermediation and auxiliary
services provided by banks, stock exchanges, factoring enterprises, credit card
enterprises, and other enterprises,
(5) Computer and information services is subdivided into computer
services (hardware and software related services and data processing services),
news agency services (provision of news, photographs, and feature articles to
the media), and other information provision services (database services and web
(6) Royalties and licence fees, covering payments and receipts for the
use of intangible non-financial assets and proprietary rights, such as patents,
copyrights, trademarks, industrial processes, and franchises,
(7) Other business services, comprising trade-related services,
operational leasing (rentals), and miscellaneous business, professional and
technical services such as legal, accounting, management consulting, public
relations services, advertising, market research and public opinion polling,
research and development services, architectural, engineering, and other
technical services, agricultural, mining and on-site processing,
(8) Personal, cultural, and recreational services is subdivided into
two categories, (i) audiovisual
services and (ii) other cultural and recreational services. The first component includes services and
fees related to the production of motion pictures, radio and television
programmes, and musical recordings.
Other personal, cultural, and recreational services includes services
such as those associated with museums, libraries, archives, and other cultural,
sporting, and recreational activities.
Data on exports and
imports of services (including government services n.i.e),
other services, as well as government services n.i.e.
are available as memorandum items in the WTO online Statistics Database.
Government services n.i.e. is a residual category covering government
transactions (including those of international organizations) not contained in
other components of the BPM5 . Included are all
transactions (in both goods and services) by embassies, consulates, military
units, with residents of economies in which they are located and all
transactions with other economies. The dataset on international trade in
services is produced jointly and published simultaneously with UNCTAD.
Coverage and comparability
implementation of BPM5, the coverage and comparability of services trade data
have improved over time, however, given that these
improvements have been made gradually, they also resulted in a number of breaks
in series and are subject to significant distortions.
First, some countries
do not collect statistics for certain service categories. Second, some service
transactions are simply not registered. If central bank records are used,
situations where no financial intermediaries are employed are not counted. In
the case of surveys, the coverage of trading establishments is often
incomplete. A particularly serious problem is that services transmitted
electronically are frequently unregistered as well as when the transactions
take place within multinational corporations. Third, statistics may be reported
on a net rather than on a gross basis, often as a result of compensation
arrangements such as in rail transport or in communication services. Fourth
some services transactions may be difficult to capture. It is often easier for
compilers to collect more complete and reliable information on trade in
services exports rather than on imports given the large number and diversity of
importers compared to that of exporters, e.g. financial services, computer
services. Fifth, some particular service transactions may not be classified to
the appropriate BPM5 services classification. Methodologies to build estimates
for certain service categories may also differ between economies, notably due
to the continuing efforts to improve these statistics. Some economies have made
progress in the estimation of insurance services to take into account premium
supplements and claim volatility (i.e. in the case of catastrophic events).
Sixth, the alternate sources used for countries which are not members of the
IMF do not necessarily comply with the IMF concepts and definitions. Seventh,
misclassification of transactions may lead to an underestimation of commercial
services when service transactions are registered as income, transfers or trade
in merchandise rather than trade in services or, conversely, to an
overestimation of commercial services when transactions pertaining to income,
transfers or official transactions are registered in the private service categories.
Specific notes for
sourced from the Eurostat database.
Trade in services of
the United States
Over recent years the
United States Bureau of Economic Analysis has continuously improved its trade in
commercial services estimates.
In 2011, the United States
implemented a number of changes in the classification of certain services
transactions beginning with statistics for the year 1999. Apart from regular updates in source data,
these improvements were part of a broader effort to align with the
recommendations of the new IMF Balance of Payments Manual (BPM6).
revisions incorporated the results of BEA’s 2009 financial services benchmark
survey (which did not contain a reporting threshold) as well as the
reclassification of postal services from U.S. government miscellaneous
services to other transportation. U.S.
expenditures by foreign nationals working at international organizations were
removed from other services. Revised
methodologies were used for estimating the U.S. expenditures of foreign
residents who work in the United
States for less than 1 year and for
air carriers’ expenditures in foreign ports. Finally, cruises fares were
reclassified from passenger fares to travel.
As a result of these changes, United States' exports and imports
of services were revised upwards.
In 2010, the United States
revised its goods and services accounts to reflect the reclassification of
certain transactions from services to goods. In particular, in previously
published statistics, certain exports and imports of military-related goods
were recorded on a transactor basis and were combined
with other services transactions in the services account. In addition,
expenditures on goods and services by foreign air and ocean carriers in U.S. ports
(exports) and by U.S.
air and ocean carriers in foreign ports (imports) were included in “other”
transportation services. Beginning with statistics for 1999, fuel expenditures
by foreign and U.S.
air and ocean carriers were reclassified from “other” transportation services
In 2008, the United States
started to compile trade in commercial services covering affiliated as well as
unaffiliated trade for individual services items (previously affiliated trade
data for a number of other commercial services items were grouped under a
single heading in US statistics). A number of changes in terms of content were
also introduced. Beginning with 2006 and continuing with 2007 surveys of
transactions in selected services and transactions in financial services,
transactions with affiliated and unaffiliated persons are collected on the same
form and in the same detail. This in particular reduces the potential for
duplicate reporting or omissions. It is important to note that given this major
revision, some time series were significantly revised and for some other
detailed services items, including both affiliated and non
affiliated trade, data are not available prior to 2006.Another major
revision was introduced in 2003, when the United States revised its
methodology for estimating trade in insurance services. The new methodology
measures insurance services as premiums less normal claims. Normal claims
comprise two components: “regularly occurring claims” that are calculated as an
average of all claims paid during the previous six years, and a share of
“catastrophic claims” that is added-on to “regularly occurring claims” in equal
increments over the two decades following their event. As comprehensive data
collection on insurance services started in 1986, the first six-year average of
“regularly occurring claims” could only be calculated for 1992. As a result,
time series on trade in insurance services, and consequently on other
commercial services, have been revised back to 1992. To complete the 2003
revision, in 2004 the United
States added to insurance services an
estimate of premium supplements (or income earned on technical reserves of
insurance companies). Insurance companies provide financial protection to
policy holders through the pooling of risk and provide financial intermediation
services through the investment of reserves. The income is treated as accruing
to the policy holders who pay it back to the insurers as supplements to
premiums to cover the full cost of insurance. The investment income of
insurance companies is not output in and of itself, it
is used to impute the value of the implicit component of insurance services
attributable to financial intermediation.
Travel exports and
transportation services exports and imports of Japan
In order to enhance
the coverage of estimates of travel exports and imports, the Bank of Japan and
the Japanese Ministry of Finance reviewed their compilation methodology,
notably by including results from a new expenditure survey of foreign
travellers as of 2003. This revision had a major impact on the estimates for
travel exports. This methodology was reviewed in 2007 based on the results of a
new survey (International Travellers’ Survey on Expenditures) which are used in
the new compilation method to directly estimate the amounts spent by travellers
to pay for goods and services. This applies to exports and imports data as from
2006. As from 2009, Japan’s
travel exports and imports data reflect the results of new surveys. Data on transportation
services are consistent with revised 1996-2004 data published in 2006 by the
Bank of Japan (based on a new methodology for measuring sea freight fares).
Trade in other
commercial services of India
In the course of
2004, the Reserve Bank of India
released new data following the introduction of a new reporting system to
improve the coverage of Indian trade in services statistics (mainly affecting
the item other business services).
The data for India for
"computer services" refer to WTO Secretariat estimates. The Indian
figures reported by the Reserve Bank of India and international agencies
refer to "software services" (covering Information Technology (IT)
and IT enabled services). The coverage of "software services" does
not correspond to the definition of computer services in international
guidelines. WTO secretariat estimates are drawn from the software figure which
is broken down into a computer/IT component included in the item "computer
services", and an IT enabled services component included under the item
"miscellaneous business, professional and technical services" (under
"other business services"). This breakdown is done on the basis of
the information published in the annual RBI report "Survey on Computer
Software & Information Technology Services Exports".
Trade in commercial
services of United Arab Emirates
trade statistics of United
Arab Emirates only cover transportation and
Trade in commercial
services of Nigeria
New data from 2005 compiled
on the basis of BPM5 recommendations were released by the Bank of Nigeria in
2007. This results in a break in series for Nigerian data in 2005.
Trade in commercial
services of South Africa
In 2006 the Reserve
Bank of South Africa
improved its commercial services estimates, and revised its data back to 2001
(resulting in a break in series for that year).
Trade in other
commercial services of Bahrain
New data compiled
from 2004 for other commercial services items, resulting in a break in series
for that year.
Trade in other commercial services of Lebanon
data compiled from 2010 resulted in a break in series for that year for other
business services, insurance services, financial services, computer and
information services, as well as personal, cultural and recreational services.
Trade in other
commercial services of Oman
In 2008 new data
compiled (new national data from new survey of corporate firms in 2007) for
other commercial services items, resulting in a break in series for 2005 for
exports and 2003 for imports.
Trade in commercial services of the Islamic Republic of Iran
Starting with 2004, Iran compiles
data according to the recommendations of the BPM5.
Trade in commercial
services of the Kingdom
of Saudi Arabia
New data are compiled
from 2005 according to BPM5 principles. Prior to 2008 a number of items (e.g.
financial services, other business services) were still not all classified
according to the BPM5 definitions and some items were received net.
Trade in financial
For Singapore (from
1995), and Switzerland,
(from 1999) data on trade in financial services include Financial
Intermediation Services Indirectly Measured (FISIM). This is not in accordance
with BPM5 recommendations.
For Australia, data
as from 2009 include FISIM due to the country's transition to BPM6.
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V. 5 Merchandise trade indices
The volume indices and the deflators (i.e. price indices
or unit values) are taken from a range of different international and national
sources. The reported deflators and volume indices may not always be available
for the most recent years or may differ in product coverage from the
corresponding value indices.
Aggregation of the indices to obtain a world total is
a two-tier process. First, export and
import deflators from national and international sources are complemented with
Secretariat estimates for missing data. They are then aggregated to obtain regional
totals. The volume index for each region is obtained by dividing the respective
trade value index for each region by the corresponding regional deflator. Second, the total world merchandise volume index is obtained
by deflating the world trade value with the aggregate of regional deflators.
Throughout the aggregation process trade values of the previous year are used
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V. 6 Selected regional integration agreements
Refer to the composition in the regional integration agreements (RIA).
Data are only available for
selected product aggregates.
RIA data include Secretariat
estimates. For African RIAs, missing reporters are estimated through
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VI. Statistical sources
Most frequently used
EUROSTAT, Comext and on-line databases
FAO, Production Yearbook
FAO, FAOSTAT Agriculture database
GTIS, Global Trade Atlas database
IMF, Balance of Payments Statistics
IMF, International Financial Statistics
IMF, World Economic Outlook database
OECD, Main Economic Indicators
OECD, Measuring Globalisation: The Role of
Multinationals in OECD Economies
OECD, Monthly Statistics of International Trade
OECD, National Accounts
OECD, Statistics on International Trade in
OECD/IEA, Energy Prices & Taxes
UNECE, Economic Survey of Europe
UNECLAC, Overview of the
Economies of Latin America and the Caribbean
UNIDO, National Accounts Statistics Database
UNSD, Comtrade database (for OECD members the UNSD-OECD
Joint Trade Data Collection and Processing system)
UNSD, International Trade Statistics Yearbook
UNSD, Monthly Bulletin of Statistics
World Bank, World Development Indicators
These sources are
supplemented by national publications, other international databases and
Figures for total merchandise
trade are largely derived from IMF, International
Financial Statistics. Data on merchandise trade by origin, destination and
product are mainly obtained from Eurostat's Comext
database, GTIS' Global Trade Atlas database and UNSD's Comtrade
database. Some inconsistencies in the aggregate export and import data for the
same country or territory between the two sources are inevitable. These can be
attributed to the use of different systems of recording trade, to the way in
which IMF and UNSD have converted data expressed in national currencies into
dollars, and revisions which can be more readily incorporated in the IMF data.
Statistics on trade
in commercial services are mainly drawn from the IMF, Balance of Payments Statistics. Data for European Union members, EU
candidate and EU observer countries as well as the EU(27)
aggregate are drawn from Eurostat on-line database from 2004. For other
economies that do not report to the IMF (e.g. Chinese Taipei) data are drawn
from national sources. Estimations for missing data are mainly based on
national statistics. Statistics on trade in commercial services by origin and
destination are also derived from national statistics.
A matrix summarizing the status
of the trade in services data publication by International organizations is
available at http://unstats.un.org/unsd/tradeserv/TFSITS/matrix.htm. The table provides
links to the databases as well as information on when the information is
updated, availability of details, partner data, etc. This table is maintained
by the Task Force on Statistics of International Trade in Services.
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Acknowledgements are due to the Food and Agriculture
Organization, the Global Trade Information Services, Inc. (GTIS), the
International Monetary Fund, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and
Development, the Statistical Office of the European Communities, the United
Nations Economic Commission for Europe, the United Nations Economic Commission
for Latin America and the Caribbean, the United Nations Statistics Division,
the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, the World Intellectual
Property Organization and the World Bank whose assistance in supplying advance
information has greatly facilitated the work of the Secretariat.
Acknowledgements are also due to national institutions for providing advance
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