Serbia’s external debt rises 1.9% y/y to EUR 26bn at end-Jan 2014

By bne IntelliNews March 24, 2014

Serbia's external debt stock increased 1.9% y/y to EUR 25.9bn at end-January 2014, speeding up from a 0.5% y/y rise the month before, driven by rising medium and long-term public indebtedness, central bank data showed.

According to IntelliNews calculations, the foreign debt equalled to 79.7% of the full-year GDP forecast, down from 85.8% a year ago. On a monthly basis, the external debt edged up 0.1% at end-January, following a 1.2% m/m hike at end-December.

Long and medium-term public sector borrowing rose 10.8% y/y to EUR 13.3bn at end-January, quickening from an 8.1% y/y growth the month before. Long and medium-term private external indebtedness declined for a fifth straight month in January, shrinking 4.9% y/y to EUR 12.4bn and following a 4.5% contraction at end-December 2013.

The short-term external debt stock plunged 50.3% y/y to EUR 184.7mn at end-January, easing from a 57.0% annual drop the month before. The reading was dragged down by both falling banking sector and corporate liabilities.

Serbia's external debt stock inched up 0.5% y/y to EUR 25.8bn at end-2013, easing from a 6.6% growth the year before, as rising long-term public indebtedness was partly offset by falling banking sector foreign liabilities

We expect higher public sector external liabilities to remain the key driver of Serbia’s foreign debt growth in 2014 due to rising fiscal imbalances. 

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