Slovakia's industrial output growth eased to 9.1% y/y in February 2014 from a revised 12.8% y/y in January on the back of a slower expansion in the key manufacturing sector, data from the country's statistics office showed.
Manufacturing production grew by 11.4% y/y in February, slowing down 15.9% y/y the month before. Production increased the most in electrical equipment (+33.1%) and coke and refined petroleum products (+29.1%).
The output of the industry’s main growth driver – the car manufacturing sector – rose by 12.5% y/y in February, slowing down from 37% annual growth the month before. Auto manufacturing is the major driving force of the Slovak economy, with the country being home to three big car assembling plants run by Germany's Volkswagen, South Korea's Kia Motors and France's PSA Peugeot Citroen.
The second most important engine of the Slovak industry, electronics production at plants run by South Korea's Samsung and Taiwan's Foxconn, posted a 19% y/y growth in February compared to a revised 10.9% annual increase in January.
The utilities sector contracted by 2.9% y/y in February after decreasing by a revised 1.1% y/y in the previous month. The mining industry’s output fell by 0.6% y/y in February following a revised 2.8% annual decline in the previous month.
On a seasonally adjusted monthly basis, Slovakia's industrial output edged down 0.2% in February after increasing 1.9% in January.
For the first two months of the year, the industrial production increased by 11% y/y.
IntelliNews comment: Slovakia’s industrial output growth eased to 5.2% in 2013 from 7.7% the year before as the key auto manufacturing sector added no new capacities and demand remained soft. But improved prospects for the eurozone, which is the main trading partner of Slovakia, are expected to boost the industry growth in 2014 already visible in the double-digit growth rates posted in Nov-Jan.
|y/y change||Feb 2014||Jan 2014||Feb 2013||Jan-Feb 2014||2013|
|--food, beverages and tobacco||-2.6%||3.3%||1.7%||0.4%||0.3%|
|--textiles, apparel, leather and related products||-4.4%||-14.5%||19.7%||-9.6%||24.6%|
|--wood and paper products, printing||1.6%||3.0%||-0.4%||2.3%||0.1%|
|--coke and refined petroleum products||29.1%||-17.0%||-24.5%||3.4%||-4.6%|
|--chemicals and chemical products||-6.4%||-8.0%||-10.0%||-7.2%||3.7%|
|--pharmaceuticals, medicinal chemical and botanical products||-24.8%||-37.8%||-30.8%||-31.5%||-43.9%|
|--rubber, plastics and other non-metallic mineral products||14.1%||9.3%||3.0%||11.7%||6.7%|
|--basic and fabricated metal products, except machinery and equipment||10.2%||6.7%||0.0%||8.4%||9.9%|
|--computers, electronics and optics||19.0%||10.9%||-3.6%||14.7%||-2.3%|
|--machinery and equipment||10.1%||13.4%||0.8%||11.8%||3.5%|
|--other manufacturing, repair and installation of machinery and equipment||12.3%||16.0%||-18.2%||14.0%||3.0%|
|Electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply||-2.9%||-1.1%||-1.4%||-2.0%||-2.7%|
|Source: Statistical Office of the Slovak Republic|
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