United States imports expected to grow in double digits: ECB

The European Central Bank (ECB) projected that United States imports will grow in double digits in 2021, supported by strong domestic demand and favorable base effects.

The ECB also expects that US imports should remain “solid” in 2022.

Likewise, the projections include US exports to rebound in a more staggered manner, in line with the slower pace of recovery in key trade from its partners.

In addition, it forecasts that the trade deficit, which has remained constant during the period 2019-2020, will increase dramatically both in US dollars and as a percentage of GDP in 2021-2022.

Overall, the bank expects US net exports to contribute negatively to growth during this period.

United States imports

Another estimate is that US GDP will grow 6.3% in 2021, a solid rebound that implies that production will rise above its pre-Covid-19 level in the second quarter.

This assumes that the rapid rate of vaccination is maintained, ensuring that most containment measures are removed by the end of June.

Under this assumption, the bank expects the economy to continue normalizing in the second and third quarters of 2021 as service providers reopen, with a more gradual reopening of the tourism sector.

Imports from the United States fell 6% year-on-year in 2020, to $ 2.4 trillion.

After growing 9% in 2018, United States imports fell 2% in 2019, at year-on-year rates.

Above all, the United States imports products such as cars, computers, telephones, medicines, oil, and auto parts.

The main sources of imports for the United States are Mexico, China, Canada and Japan.


The rapid growth of the US economy in 2021 will be underpinned by strong fiscal support from the March 2021 American Rescue Plan (ARP) and accommodative monetary policies.

The ECB also projects growth to slow to 3.8% in 2022, as the post-Covid-19 rally fades naturally, while fiscal support will be less as most ARP measures expire.

Lastly, private investment and consumption are expected to remain the main growth drivers throughout 2021-2022, as Covid-19-related uncertainty subsides, households slowly reduce their accumulated excess savings cushion and employment is recovering, particularly in the service sector.