The European Union's imports from Britain almost halved in the first two months of the year following the UK exit from the EU single market, data showed today.
The figures also showed that the 27-nation bloc's trade surplus with Britain rose as exports fell by less.
The European Union's statistics office Eurostat said EU imports from Britain dropped 47% year-on-year in January-February to €16.6 billion while exports to the UK declined only 20.2% to €39.8 billion.
As a result, the EU's trade surplus with Britain rose to €23.2 billion in the first two months after Britain's Brexit transition period expired.
This compares to €18.6 billion during the same time in 2020, when London still enjoyed unfettered access to the EU's single market.
Eurostat said the euro zone's unadjusted trade surplus with the rest of the world fell to €17.7 billion in February from €23.4 billion in February 2020.
However, because of a strong January, the two-month cumulative result was still better than last year showing a surplus of €28.7 billion compared to €25 billion in the first two months of 2020.
Adjusted for seasonal swings, the euro zone trade surplus with the rest of the world was €18.4 billion in February after €28.7 billion in January as exports fell 2.5% on the month while imports rose 3.4%.