Bulgarias foreign debt drops 5% y/y to EUR 35.1bn at end-March 2012.

By bne IntelliNews April 26, 2012
Bulgarias gross external debt declined by 5% y/y and 0.3% in a month to EUR 35.1bn as of end-February, according to preliminary data of the central bank. Foreign liabilities of the private sector continued to fall faster compared to those of the public entities - by 5.4% y/y as opposed to 1.8% y/y, respectively. The reduction of the private sector debt is still mainly a result of banking sector activity (down by 17.2% y/y; the contraction of the short-term deposits of foreigners were with largest contribution) but the liabilities of the non-banking companies also fell in February (down by 3.1% y/y), second consecutive decline since October 2010. Total foreign debt accounted for 88.1% of the full-year GDP forecast as compared to 96% of GDP a year earlier and 91.9% at end-2011. The short-term debt, covering liabilities with original maturity of one and less than one year, reached 28.2% of the total, the same as at the end of December and January but down from 29.7% at end-Feb 2011. The credits on demand accounted for 24.9% of the total external debt, lower compared to 25.1% at end-Feb 2011. Some 62% of them were reported as inter-company loans. The ratio of foreign reserves to short-term debt fell to 129.4% at the end of February as compared to revised 130.3% a month earlier and 115.3% at the end of 2010. The ratio is above the level in the past four years but is remains weaker compared to about 300% in 2002-2004.

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