Broad Economy Sales and Exports Statistics

The BESES is an experimental annual measure of local businesses’ sales to markets outside Northern Ireland.

Estimates of the number of businesses selling to markets outside NI are also presented. The latest estimates remain designated as ‘experimental’ to reflect the fact that they are under development.

Northern Ireland Broad Economy Sales and Exports Statistics: Goods and Services Results 2015 – published 11 May 2017

Headline Results

  • Total sales by companies in Northern Ireland (NI) were estimated to be worth £66.7 billion in 2015, an increase of 0.7% (£0.5 billion) over the year.
  • Total sales of goods were estimated to be worth £48.5 billion in 2015. The total sales of goods in 2014 were also worth £48.5 billion and hence the total sales of goods have remained stagnant over the year.
  • Sales of services represented 27.2% of total sales in 2015 and were estimated to be worth £18.2 billion. Sales of services increased by 2.5% over the year (£0.4 billion).
  • External sales to markets outside of NI rose by £0.3 billion (1.3%) to £23.0 billion in 2015.
  • External sales of goods by NI companies were estimated to be worth £18.3 billion in 2015, 79.6% of all external sales. This represents a decrease of 0.5% over the year (£0.1 billion).
  • External sales of services were estimated to be worth £4.7 billion or 20.4% of all external sales in 2015. This represents an increase of 8.8% (£0.4 billion) over the year.
  • Exports were estimated to be worth £9.1 billion in 2015, a fall of 5.0% (£0.5 billion) over the year.
  • Exports of goods were estimated to be worth £7.6 billion in 2015, a decrease of 5.6% (£0.4 billion). Exports of goods represented 83.0% of all exports sales.
  • Exports of services represented 17.0% of total export sales in 2015 and were estimated to be worth £1.5 billion. Exports of services decreased by 2.4% (£38 million) over the year.

Current publications and tables

Comparison with HMRC Regional Trade Statistics

BESES estimates are not directly comparable with HMRC Regional Trade Statistics due to methodological differences. NISRA and HMRC have released a joint statement regarding the different value of exports produced by each method.

Background information

Archive data

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Exporting Northern Ireland Services

Based on information collected via the ITIS and supplemented with information from MSES and NIABI.

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