Estonian industrial production expanded 9% y/y in February, working-day adjusted data from Statistics Estonia showed on March 31.
The reading shows the industrial sector improving its performance after output grew 6.6% in January, and extends a trend of strong growth that began in September. That offers the Estonian economy a good start towards fulfilling forecasts that economic expansion will pick up speed in 2017.
Estonian GDP grew 1.6% in 2016, improving on the six-year low of 1.1% seen in the preceding year. The economy is predicted to expand 2.2% in 2017, according to the European Commission. Swedbank offers the same forecast, but is more optimistic than Brussels about growth in 2018, which it sees at 2.8%, 0.1pp above the estimate of the EU executive.
In unadjusted annual terms, industrial production expanded 8.2%. In monthly terms, output gained a seasonally adjusted 2.3% in February.
Production increased in all three main segments of industry in February. The energy segment saw output grow 23.4% y/y. Mining expanded 34.6%, while in the manufacturing segment, growth came in at 5.8%. Most manufacturing sub-segments increased output, except for the manufacture of furniture and computer, electronic and optical products.
Some 70% of total industrial output was sold on the external market. According to unadjusted data, export sales of manufacturing production increased 2% y/y and domestic sales rose 6%.