INTERVIEW: “The weekend’s protests were the Russian peoples’, not the opposition’s” – Maxim Reznik
Western Balkans citizens legally resident in EU equal to 14% of region’s population
International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) has stripped Belarus of the right to hold the World Championship this year
Alexei Navalny arrested on arrival as he returns home
Russia's NorNickel adopts blockchain for supply chain management
Russia goes ahead with eSIM technology
Russia's retailer X5 Group posts 13% sales growth in 4Q20
National Bank of Ukraine retains a key policy rate at 6%, the outlook of the CPI deteriorates
Western Balkans and Ukraine urged to scrutinise coal subsidies
Oligarchs trying to derail Ukraine’s privatisation programme, warns the head of Ukraine’s State Property Fund
VISEGRAD BLOG: Central Europe's populists need a new strategy for Biden
LONG READ: The oligarch problem
OUTLOOK 2021 Lithuania
EBRD says loan to Estonia’s controversial Porto Franco project was never disbursed
Czech MPs pass protectionist food law in violation of EU rules
M&A in Central and Eastern Europe fell 16% in value in 2020, says CMS report
Hungarian vehicle makers hit by supply chain shortage
COVID-19 and Trump’s indifference helped human rights abusers in 2020
Polish industrial production continues boom in December
OUTLOOK 2021 Poland
OUTLOOK 2021 Slovakia
BRICKS & MORTAR: Rosier future beckons for CEE retailers after year of change and disruption
FDI inflows to CEE down 58% in 1H20 but rebound expected
BALKAN BLOG: Superstition and resentment surround vaccination plans
Albania needs reforms for e-commerce to thrive, says World Bank
BALKAN BLOG: US approach to switch from quick-fix dealmaking to experience and cooperation
Bosnia's exports in 2020 amounted to BAM10.5bn, trade deficit to BAM6.3bn
Retailers and restaurant owners threaten protests in Bulgaria if reopening is delayed
Bulgaria's Biodit first company to IPO on new BEAM market
Bulgaria’s government considers gradual easing of COVID-related restrictions
Spring lockdown caused spike in online transactions in Croatia
ING: Growth in the Balkans: from zero to hero again?
Labour demand down 28% y/y in Croatia in 2020
Kosovo’s biggest opposition party risks being unable to run in general election
OUTLOOK 2021 Moldova
Storming parliaments: New Europe's greatest hits
World Bank revises projection for Moldova’s 2020 GDP decline to 7.2%
North Macedonia plans to cut personal income tax in IT sector to zero in 2023
Romania government to pursue “ambitious” timetable for justice reforms
Private finance mobilised by development banks up 9% to $175bn in 2019
OUTLOOK 2021 Romania
Slovenia’s economic sentiment indicator up 2.2 pp m/m in January
OUTLOOK 2021 Slovenia
Slovenia’s opposition files no-confidence motion against Jansa cabinet
Slovenia’s government to release funds to news agency STA after EU pressure
D’S Damat franchise deals ‘show Turkey’s hard-pressed mall operators becoming their own tenants’
Turkey’s benchmark rate held as concerns over faltering recovery come to fore
Turkish lira breaches HSBC’s stop-loss, Turkey ETF signalling outflows
CAUCASUS BLOG : What can Biden offer the Caucasus and Stans, all but forgotten about by Trump?
Armenia ‘to extend life of its 1970s Metsamor nuclear power plant after 2026’
OUTLOOK 2021 Armenia
COMMENT: Record high debt levels will slow post-coronavirus recovery, threaten some countries' financial stability, says IIF
OUTLOOK 2021 Georgia
Iran’s President Khamenei menaces private citizen Trump
Iran’s technology minister indicted for failing to properly implement internet censorship
No US move to rejoin Iran nuclear deal imminent, say Biden national security nominees
TEHRAN BLOG: Will Biden bet on a quick return to the Iran nuclear deal?
Central Asia vaccination plans underwhelm, but governments look unruffled
Fears of authoritarianism as Kyrgyz populist wins landslide and backing for ‘Khanstitution’
OUTLOOK 2021 Mongolia
Mongolia's PM quits amid protests over treatment of mother with coronavirus and newborn baby
Mongolia's winter dzud set to be one of most extreme on record says Red Cross
Mongolian coal exports to China paralysed as Beijing demands virus testing of truck drivers
OUTLOOK 2021 Tajikistan
OUTLOOK 2021 Turkmenistan
Turkmenistan: How the Grinch stole New Year
COMMENT: Uzbekistan is being transformed, but where are the democratic reforms?
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Romania’s fob/cif trade gap expanded by 16.7% y/y in 2018, the slowest pace in the past four years. Nonetheless, the gap hit €15.1bn, which was nearly 8% of the year’s GDP.
Measured in FOB/FOB terms, not including some costs related to imports (insurance, transport), the gap was only €11.7bn, but this was still triple the deficit in 2014 and more than 6.1% of GDP. Imports increased faster than exports for the fifth year in a row, driven by fiscal stimulus that surfaced in households’ superior incomes.
Imports increased by 9.6%, to €82.9bn in 2018(cif terms). Exports rose at a robust rate of 8.1%, to €67.7bn , but this was still insufficient.
When it comes to shorter-term dynamics, the imports rose in line with the year’s average, namely by 9.6% y/y, in Q4, when exports advanced by only 5.1% y/y.
The state forecasting body CNSP expects exports to remain strong and keep rising at annual rates of over 8% per annum in 2019-2022. The economic slowdown in Europe might result in slower exports, while imports (seen by CNSP as rising by more than 9% per annum in 2019-2020) depend on the continuation of the fiscal stimulus. The exchange rate correction, if of significant magnitude, could heal the chronic external deficits that resulted in a Current Account gap that “can be financed, but is at [the upper] limit,” in the words of National Bank of Romania governor Mugur Isarescu, namely around or slightly over 4% of GDP.
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