Serbia's trade deficit down by 4% y/y in Jan-Sep.

By bne IntelliNews November 1, 2010
Serbia's trade deficit decreased by 4% y/y to EUR 3.9bn in January-September, the statistics office reported. The pace of the deficit contraction further decelerated compared to the previous month and this year's trade deficit would probably top the 2009 figure. In Jan-Sep, exports amounted to EUR 5.3bn, up by 21.1% y/y. Imports returned to a growth, as well, increasing by 9.1% y/y to EUR 9.2bn. The imports coverage by exports rose to 57.3% in Jan-Sept, compared to 51.8% in the same period of 2009. Reproduction goods had largest share both in exports and imports, of 65% and 56.1% respectively. On the exports side, reproduction goods increased by nearly 48% y/y, while imports of this group of products went up by 17% y/y. Both energy exports and imports grew by 45% and 39%, respectively. The exports of durable goods for consumption increased by 6% y/y in the first nine months of 2010, while exports of non-durable goods for consumption rose by a mere 1.5% y/y. Imports growth of both durable and non-durable goods for consumption was modest, at 0.2% y/y and 3.4% y/y, respectively. Capital goods imports still had the third largest share in total imports, but were lower by 8% y/y in Jan-Sep. In another breakdown, steel and non-ferrous metals had the largest share in country's exports. These two groups of products recorded exports worth EUR 933mn, and accounted for 17.6% of all exports in Jan-Sep (compared to 12.6% share in the same period in 2009). Electrical machines and appliances, fruit and vegetables, grains and clothing were also among Serbia's biggest export items. On the other hand, oil and oil derivatives, gas, non-ferrous metals, electrical machines and appliances and iron and steel were the top import items, together accounting for 27% of all imports. In September alone, the trade deficit amounted to EUR 486mn, and was higher by 19% y/y. Italy, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Germany are main Serbia's export destinations, while the main importers are Russia, Germany and Italy. Exports to the EU account for two-thirds of Serbia's exports. Also, the EU is the country's main trading partner in terms of imports with 56% share.

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