Bulgaria's foreign trade deficit increased 25.8% y/y to BGN4.2bn (€2.1bn) in January-September, preliminary statistics office data showed. The trade gap equalled 5.3% of the 2014 GDP projection, up by 1pps compared to a year ago.
Exports (FOB), which have been consistently below their prior-year level, fell 2.1% y/y to BGN31.8bn in January-September. Sales to non-EU countries (third countries) shrank 8% y/y to BGN11.9bn, whereas exports to the EU rose 1.9% y/y to BGN19.9bn.
The annual decline in exports can be largely attributed to the lower sales of mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials to third countries, which dropped 16.6% y/y to BGN3.2bn. In addition, sales of crude materials, fuels excluded, to third countries, plunged 29.9% y/y to BGN936.4mn and those of food and live animals fell 11.3% y/y to BGN1.06bn.
Exports to Turkey, which absorbed the biggest share of all the goods Bulgaria sold to non-residents (25%), decreased by 3.5% y/y to BGN3bn.
Bulgaria imported (FOB) BGN36bn worth of goods in the first nine months of the year, up 0.5% y/y. Imports from the EU rose 2.7% y/y to BGN21.9bn, while imports from third countries fell 2.8% y/y to BGN14.1bn. Russia was the main source of Bulgaria's non-EU imports with a 40% share, trailed by Turkey with 14.6%.
Bulgaria's position as a net importer of goods is expected to drag down economic growth this year. The country's GDP rose 1.6% y/y in Q2, but is likely to average 1.2% for the full-2014, according to the European Commission. However, the EC predicts that exports are set to resume growing at a moderate pace in the next couple of years and the contribution of net trade to overall economic growth is projected to turn positive in 2015.
The third bridge over Danube between Romania and Bulgaria will be part of a package that four Balkan countries — Romania, Bulgaria, Serbia and Greece — will offer China for funding, the prime ... more
Bulgaria’s government does not intend to participate in the deal to sell assets of Czech energy company CEZ, Finance Minister ... more
Bulgaria’s main opposition Socialist Party (BSP) is demanding the dismissal of Interior Minister ... more