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In 2014, China kept its position as the world’s largest exporter of goods for the sixth consecutive year. China's share of world exports has exceeded 12.3% - is a new record in history. United States, being the second largest merchandise exporter in terms of gross value, is the largest importer also. Net imports of goods in the US is the largest in the world in nominal terms. In 2014 net imports of goods in US was $787 bln, $610 bln more than the second-largest world’s merchandise net importer – United Kingdom. The third world’s country by the amount of net imports is India (143 billion dollars as of 2014).

Japan, which was on the top of the ranking of world’s net exporting countries 30 years ago, in 2011 became a net importer of goods for the first time since the early 1980s. By the end of 2014, Japan's net imports increased to 138 billion dollars and the country has become the fourth largest in the world in terms of merchandise net imports.

Explore how the structure of the world’s exports and imports has changed over the years. Select the country, geographic region or country group in the list to see the trends on the graph below the page.

Source: Values and shares of merchandise exports and imports, annual, 1948-2014

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