Azerbaijan’s retail trade turnover grew by 2.6% y/y in comparable prices in the first two months of 2019, reaching AZN5.5bn (€2.9bn), the State Statistical Committee of the Republic of Azerbaijan reported.
Turnover of food products, beverages and tobacco products amounted to AZN2.8bn, while AZN2.7bn worth of non-food products were sold.
A breakdown of the results showed that the strongest increases in turnover were for pharmaceutical and medical products, up 3.4% y/y, and clothes, shoes and textiles, up 3.1%. Food products turnover rose 2.6%.
The results also showed a continuing shift from informal to formal retail, as seen in other former Soviet countries. In January-February 2019, 19.2% of consumer goods were sold by trade enterprises, 49.6 % by private entrepreneurs, and 31.2% in markets and fairs. There was a 30.1% rise in retail turnover by enterprises, at the same time as a 1.4% decrease in retail turnover by private entrepreneurs and a 3.6% decrease in retail turnover at markets and fairs.
Azerbaijan’s retail turnover was strong until the collapse of oil prices at the end of 2014 as a middle class began to emerge. However, following the crisis retail has started to recover again as oil prices stabalised.