Albania’s current account deficit narrows 4.4% y/y in H1 2013.

By bne IntelliNews September 11, 2013

Albania’s current account deficit narrowed by 4.4% y/y to EUR 519mn in H1 2013, the central bank said. According to IntelliNews calculations, the gap accounted for 5.1% of the projected full-year GDP, down from 5.7% a year earlier. In absolute terms, the improvement was largely due to shrinking foreign trade deficit, which more than offset the deterioration on the service account and current transfers.

The deficit on the trade account dropped by 22.5% to EUR 729mn, as exports increased by 16.8% y/y to EUR 841mn and imports declined by 5.5% y/y to EUR 1.57bn. The net services account produced a EUR 81mn deficit in the first half of the year, which negatively compared to a EUR 35mn surplus a year earlier. This was mainly due to a deterioration on the tourism account, which also reversed to a EUR 66mn deficit in H1 2013 from a surplus of EUR 10mn in the same period on 2012. In particular, tourism inflows declined by 7.7% y/y to EUR 398mn, while at the same time outflows increased by 10.5% to EUR 465mn.

The income account registered a deficit of EUR 33mn, lower than the EUR 68mn gap a year ago. Current transfers witnessed a 24.5% annual decline. Within this, net remittances dropped even faster, by 33.1% y/y to EUR 228mn.

Currnet Account, H1, EUR mn    
  2012 2013 % y/y
Current Account  -543 -519 -4.4
Goods -941 -729 -22.5
        Export 720 841 16.8
        Import -1661 -1570 -5.5
Services 35 -81 -331.4
        Export 675 631 -6.5
        Import -640 -712 11.3
        Tourism 10 -66 -760.0
Income -68 -33 -51.5
Current transfers 432 325 -24.8
        Remittances  339 226 -33.3
Capital transfers 56 15 -73.2
Source: Central bank      

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