The Spanish economy has been saved from an even greater slump by exports. Current data on the trade balance reflect a reduction of 33.6% in the trade deficit as a result of strong growth in the export sector. In 2012 Spain’s exports increased by 3.8% to 222,643.9 million euros, a new record.
The increased competitiveness of Spanish exports is mainly due to the greater number of exporting companies and the orientation towards new markets, which explains why, despite the recession, the results of the Spanish balance of trade in 2012 were favourable overall.
A key element in the success of our export sector is the reorientation of our exporters towards areas with greater growth potential not traditionally served by our companies. Thus, in 2012 exports to Oceania grew by 37.6%, to Africa by 30.6%, to Latin America by 14.9%, to North America by 13.5% and to Asia by 11.9%. And in line with this greater diversification, the share of exports to the EU fell from 80.1% in 2007 to 62.8% in 2012.
The increase in the number of companies exporting – 130,247 in 2012, an increase of 12% compared to 2011 – is also an important factor.
Exporting entails international transport, and any carrier who engages in transport outside the European Union needs to know about the customs legislation, the system, operation and number of bilateral or CEMT permits, the road transport restrictions, tolls, fuel prices and a whole host of mechanisms that are intrinsic to international transport, and which will ensure successful transport and customer satisfaction.
Advances in TIR operation and implementation of TIR-EPD in intermodal transport are significant, enabling prior information on freight to be compiled and sent free of charge through the TIR preliminary declarations (in accordance with the WCO’s SAFE regulations). This reduces waiting times at customs, fosters trade and speeds up transport substantially, thereby promoting exports. In addition, the design and future implementation of the CMR electronic consignment E-bill of lading will ensure efficient movement of goods, rapid transmission of information and the fulfilment of obligations by the contracting parties, all of which favour exports.
The domestic market also requires greater security with regard to goods in shipment. Therefore the application of TIR in the EU as a security system for the internal transport of goods may provide safer transport services at domestic level. The European Economic Commission of the United Nations, specifically the Working Group on Customs Affairs, is looking into this matter and is committed to considering the proposal. A positive response from the UN would result in safer exports.