Bulgaria's GDP growth quickens to 0.8% y/y in Q3 2013 - flash estimate

By bne IntelliNews November 14, 2013

Bulgaria's real GDP increased at an annual rate of 0.8% in the third quarter of 2013, accelerating from 0.2% in Q2 - the quickest pace of growth in more than a year, according to the flash estimate of the statistics office. The Bulgarian economy also recorded its biggest quarterly growth rate in two and a half years as seasonally-adjusted GDP was up 0.6% q/q in July-September, following a drop of 0.1% in Apr-June.

The bounce in the growth momentum is associated with a higher level of final consumption expenditure, which rose 0.4% y/y in Q3, accelerating from 0.2% yearly growth in Q2. Exports also helped pull up the GDP figure as sales abroad of Bulgarian goods climbed 6.7% y/y in Q3 after increasing 4.5% y/y in the previous quarter. The rise in economic activity coincides with a higher employment rate of 48.2% in Q3, up by 0.3pps y/y, which, however, reflected a contraction in the working age population and a smaller number of employed persons.

The quickening growth of consumption expenditure was due to a deceleration in the decline of household spending, which fell 1.0% y/y in Q3, narrowing from a 1.3% y/y drop in Q2. The pace of increase of government outlays slowed to 2.1% y/y in Q3 from 2.6% y/y in the second quarter. Furthermore, the value of purchases that contribute to gross capital formation was up 1.2% y/y in Q3, while imports climbed 5.0% on the year.

In October, the government lowered its economic growth projection for 2013 to 0.6% from an earlier estimate of 1.0% due to revised expectations of the level of domestic demand. In addition, both the IMF and the EC have cut their GDP growth forecasts on Bulgaria to 0.5% this year, down from previous estimates of 1.6% and 0.9%, respectively.

It is expected that economic activity in the remainder of 2013 will be driven by public expenditures and the export-oriented industries.

Related Articles

Former Bulgarian energy minister charged in abuse of office case

The anti-corruption unit of Bulgaria’s prosecution service has formally indicted former energy minister Rumen Ovcharov in an abuse of office case ... more

South Africa’s NEPI acquires shopping malls in Hungary, Bulgaria for €528mn

South African fund NEPI Rockastle said it has acquired two new shopping centres – in Hungary and Bulgaria – for a combined €528mn. The fund, which purchased another shopping centre in ... more

CEZ’s attempts to sell Bulgarian assets reportedly suspended

The sale procedure initiated by CEZ for its assets in Bulgaria has been suspended, Bulgaria’s Energy Minister Temenujka Petkova said ... more

Dismiss