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11th March 2021, 18:41

Crude oil no.1 product imported to Gibraltar from UK during 2020, despite no crude demand locally

Crude oil was the number one product imported to Gibraltar from the UK during 2020. According to figures published by the UK Government, £435 million worth of crude oil was exported to Gibraltar to the end of the third quarter last year.

The UK’s Department for International Trade has published a factsheet detailing trade and investment between the UK and Gibraltar. You can read it here.

According to the report, total trade in goods and services – that is exports and imports - between the UK and Gibraltar amounted to £3.7 billion in the four quarters to the end of the third quarter in 2020.

This is down 10% from the previous year.

Goods and services imported to Gibraltar from the UK for the same period amounted to £3 billion. Those exported from Gibraltar to the UK came to £673 million. Though lower than good and services imported to the Rock, this is actually a 40% increase in Gibraltar exports to the UK, compared to the previous year.

The values make Gibraltar the UK’s 45th largest trading partner for the 2020 period.

Of the 3 billion imported from the UK, 2.2 billion is made up of services. The rest is goods.

52% of all UK goods imported by the Rock was made up of crude oil, ranking it first.

Cars, refined oil and ships also top the lists, with many of these items traded in both directions between the UK and Gibraltar.

GBC asked the Government why crude oil would be the top good imported from the UK to Gibraltar. It said that the amounts relate to imports and exports registered by Customs authorities of Gibraltar and the UK, but that the underlying trade is in the private sector.

For its part, Gib Oil told GBC that it doesn't deal with crude oil, but understands that crude oil from the UK to Gibraltar is all traded volume and not physical delivery into Gibraltar as there is no crude demand locally. It adds that this is usually down to ships that arrive here on Eastern Anchorage and then sell it on to other global destinations where refineries are located.

GBC asked the Government whether the trade of crude oil through Gibraltar attracts any levies or fees. It told us that the benefit to Gibraltar of this and other non dutiable products is indirect, that is, in jobs etc.