Slovak economy best performer in Central Europe with 1.2% growth in Q4

Slovak economy best performer in Central Europe with 1.2% growth in Q4
/ bne IntelliNews
By Albin Sybera February 15, 2024

Gross domestic product (GDP) in Slovakia increased by 1.2% year-on-year and by 0.3% quarter-on-quarter in the final quarter of 2023.

The country’s Statistical Office published just the flash estimate figures without a detailed breakdown and put economic growth above 1% for the whole year 2023.

The Q4 growth “was supported mainly by the y/y increase in investments”, statisticians report highlighted. “For the whole year, the economic performance was driven by investment and a positive foreign trade balance. Final household consumption remained depressed”, it added.  

The Q4 figures represent the best performance among the four central European countries of the Visegrad region and is also better than the EU average of 0.1% growth.

The Slovak economy “showed remarkable resilience during last year”, commented Matej Hornak, an economist at Erste’s local branch, for daily DennikN.  

Hornak explained that the Slovak economy is an industry and export-oriented one, pointing to the role of the robust car industry, which prevented a more dramatic decline in the country’s industry in 2023 than the 0.6% drop reported by statisticians last week. The automobile industry registered a y/y growth of 4.9%, the highest since 2018.

Still, the figure meant the lowest drop in the Slovak industry in 15 years, while the turnover of Slovak retail trade decreased by 4.5% in 2023, the worst result since 2009.    

Economists remain cautious about the level of GDP growth in 2024, pointing to many external risks, including the recent unstable situation in the Red Sea affecting trade, although Erste expects up to 2% growth.