Market shares


Institute of National Accounts (INA), Eurostat


The market share of a country/group of countries i in market j, Aij, is defined as: Aij = Xi / Mj

where Xi refers to the exports of country group i and Mj to the imports into market j.

It thus concerns the share of the exports of country/group of countries i in the total imports into market j.

The Flemish Region’s export is calculated by multiplying the Eurostat figures for Belgian exports by a factor equal to the share of the Flemish Region in Belgian exports according to the INR, which is the authentic source. All export figures are calculated according to the ‘community concept,’ which is uniformly applied in the EU by Eurostat. For the calculation of the market shares, the Flemish export thus obtained has been divided by the total imports of the trading partners. In this way, the Flemish market shares have been harmonised as much as possible with those of the neighbouring countries, which are also based on Eurostat and thus calculated according to the community concept. As for the imports of our trading partners, use is made of UNCTAD, because Eurostat figures are not available for this variable.

The advantage of the community concept is that it is applied throughout Europe and thus provides internationally comparable trade figures. These figures are also standardly used in Flanders. The disadvantage is that the community concept allocates transit to the transit country, which somewhat inflates the export of the transit countries. The Flemish ports make our region into a transit country, so that the Flemish export figures are, under the community concept, to a certain degree ‘flattering’. This disadvantage equally applies to the Netherlands and to a lesser degree to Germany. In the absence of other internationally comparable figures for other concepts, such as the national concept (in which transit is eliminated), we stick to the figures according to the community concept.

The figures always refer to trade in goods. The figures are in nominal prices, which means that prices are used as they are at a given moment and inflation is not taken into account.

Remarks on quality

The Belgian data are regionally distributed using various sources: UNCTAD, Eurostat, etc. 

They are an estimate in other words.


Institute of National Accounts: Foreign trade


Eurostat: International trade


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