Serbia's 9-mo trade gap narrows 27% y/y to EUR 3.2bn

By bne IntelliNews November 1, 2013

Serbia's foreign trade deficit narrowed by 27.2% y/y to EUR 3.2bn in January-September 2013, as strong exports growth offset a mild increase in imports, statistics office data showed.  The reading equalled to 9.6% of the full-year GDP projection, down from 14.6% a year earlier, according to IntelliNews calculations. The nine-month import-export coverage ratio improved to 71.8% from 59.4% a year earlier.

Exports jumped 26.7% y/y to EUR 8.1bn in the first nine months of 2013 underpinned by higher motor vehicle and oil products sales abroad.  Fiat Automobili Srbija (FAS) and oil firm NIS, controlled by Russia’s Gazprom Neft, were the main exporters over the period with a total of EUR 1.34bn worth of sales or close to a 17% share in total exports, data from the finance ministry showed. Higher sales of electrical equipment, chemicals, electricity, wearing apparel and food products also supported the overall export growth. Imports went up 4.8% y/y to EUR 11.3bn in January-September, speeding from a 1.9% rise a year earlier.

Seasonally-adjusted data showed that Serbian exports expanded 6.5% m/m in September, while imports grew 4.0% m/m in euro terms, the statistics office said. Road vehicles were the biggest export item in September, while accessories of motor vehicles were the top import item.

The main export destinations for domestic producers were Italy, Germany and Bosnia. The major import partners were Italy, Germany and Russia.

Foreign trade,EUR mn Exports Imports Trade gap Exports, y/y,% Imports,y/y,% Trade gap,y/y,% 
Sep'12 772,1 1149,6 -377,5 8,6 -4,8 -24,0
Sep'13 1086,3 1349,5 -577,4 40,7 17,4 53,0
Jan-Sep'12 6400,2 10781,6 -4381,4 1,9 4,5 8,5
Jan-Sep'13 8108,2 11298,9 -3190,7 26,7 4,8 -27,2
Source: Statistics office             

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