The net investment position of the EU slightly up at over €1 300 billion

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The FINANCIAL — Net foreign direct investment (FDI) stocks held in the rest of the world by investors resident in the European Union (EU) amounted to €7 600 bn at the end of 2016, up by 4.6% compared with the end of 2015.

Meanwhile, investment stocks held by the rest of the world in the EU rose at almost the same pace to €6 270 bn at the end of 2016 (+4.5%). In other words, the EU slightly consolidated a net investment position of €1 330 bn vis-a-vis the rest of the world.

Special Purpose Entities (SPEs) resident in the EU reinforced their major role in FDI, accounting for 54.5% of the total EU FDI stocks held abroad and for 63.9% of the FDI stocks held by the rest of the world in the EU.

These data, subject to revision, are issued by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. FDI stocks help to quantify the impact of globalisation and measure longstanding economic links between countries (according to immediate counterpart criteria). They provide an indication of the relative importance of a country’s economic presence abroad, or that of foreign partners in the reporting entity, measured in terms of FDI capital.

EU and US markets remain highly interconnected

At the end of 2016, the United States absorbed 36.1% of the total FDI stocks held by the EU in the rest of the world (€2 744 bn), far ahead of Switzerland (€977 bn or 12.9%), Brazil (€373 bn or 4.9%), Bermuda (€370 bn or 4.9%), China (€304 bn or 4.0%) and Canada (€265 bn or 3.5%).

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In the reverse direction, United States’ direct investors slightly decreased (-2.5%) their presence in the EU to €2 391 bn of FDI stocks at the end of 2016 (or 38.1% of total FDI stocks held by the rest of the world in the EU). They were followed by those from Switzerland (€767 bn or 12.2%), the offshore financial centres of Bermuda (€644 bn or 10.3%) and Jersey (€314 bn or 5.0%), Canada (€250 bn or 4.0%) and Japan (€206 bn, or 3.3%).


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