Latvia Economy Profile: GDP and Top 5 Imports/Exports

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In this economic guide to Latvia we’ll give you an overview of the Latvian economy, including its primary imports and exports of goods and services.

Latvia Economy Overview

A GDP of $34.4 billion makes Latvia the world’s 99th largest economy. Based on the diversity and complexity of its exports, the country ranks number 36 on the Economic Complexity Index.

With imports of $22 billion exceeding exports of $15.8 billion, Latvia has a negative trade balance of -$6.23 billion. Imports per capita are $11,400 while exports per capita are $8,200. Sawn wood is the most exported product and Lithuania the biggest export destination. The most imported product is refined petroleum from Russia.

GDP of Latvia

Latvia’s GDP is $34.4 billion, representing a negative growth of -3.5% between 2008 and 2018. However, its GDP per capita of $17,861 grew by 9.06% over the same period.

In terms of its GDP, the country ranks number 99 in the world. Russia and Lithuania count among Latvia’s top trade partners.

Latvia’s Top 5 Commodity Exports

  1. Sawn wood – $867 million
  2. Refined petroleum – $495 million
  3. Fuel wood – $435 million
  4. Wheat – $409 million
  5. Rough wood – $363 million

Other Notable Latvian Exports 

  • Broadcasting equipment – $703 million
  • Hard liquor – $561 million
  • Packaged medicaments – $501 million
  • Gas turbines – $405 million
  • Plywood – $332 million

Latvia is the world’s 78th biggest exporter with total exports growing by $2.71 billion to $15.8 billion between 2013 and 2018. The top 3 export destinations from Latvia are Lithuania ($2.25 billion), Estonia ($1.45 billion), and Russia ($1.32 billion).

The United Kingdom is the biggest export market for sawn wood, receiving 38.5% of total exports of $867 million.

Latvia’s Top 5 Commodity Imports

  1. Refined petroleum – $2.83 billion
  2. Petroleum gas – $477 million
  3. Coal tar oil – $385 million
  4. Wheat – $266 million

Other Notable Latvian Imports

  • Cars – $718 million
  • Broadcasting equipment – $689 million
  • Packaged medicaments – $597 million
  • Planes, helicopters, and/or spacecraft – $549 million
  • Gas turbines – $522 million

Latvia is the 74th largest trade destination in the world with refined petroleum making up the biggest chunk of its total imports of $22 billion. This represents an increase of $5.12 billion in the five-year period from 2013 to 2018.

Russia is Latvia’s biggest import partner, with 62% of the $2.83 billion worth of imported refined petroleum coming from this neighboring country. The total value of imports from Russia is $4.18 billion.

Details About Latvia Imports/Exports 

Sawn Wood

Latvia is the world’s 11th largest exporter of sawn wood. Annual exports total $867 million of which 38.5% ($334 million) is destined for the United Kingdom.

Other big export markets for sawn wood from Latvia are Estonia ($62.3 million), the Netherlands ($47.4 million), South Korea ($47.3 million), and Germany ($40.4 million). Australia is emerging as one of the fastest-growing markets.

Hard Liquor

Hard liquor exports and imports make up an important part of Latvia’s economy. Annual exports of $561 million make it the 12th biggest exporter of hard liquor, while imports of $486 million mean they rank number 14 globally.

Almost two-thirds of hard liquor from Latvia is destined for Russia. The biggest import market is the United Kingdom, with $153 million of Latvia’s hard liquor coming from there.

Broadcasting Equipment

Broadcasting equipment is the 2nd most exported and 3rd most imported product in Latvia. Annual exports amount to $703 million and imports to $689 million.

Lithuania is Latvia’s top trading partner for this equipment with $146 million destined for and $179 million originating from this country. The fastest-growing export markets are Germany and Estonia, while Vietnam and China are the fastest-growing import markets.

All figures based on OEC/IMF 2018 calculations and projections unless otherwise stated.

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