Slovakia's foreign trade surplus shrinks 4.3% y/y to EUR 229.3mn in Jan 2012.

By bne IntelliNews March 12, 2012
Slovak foreign trade balance showed a surplus of EUR 229.3mn in January 2012, 4.3% lower compared to January 2011, preliminary data from the statistics office showed. The office revised down the December surplus to EUR 71mn from EUR 82.1mn. The annual growth of exports accelerated to 9.5% in January from 6.9% in the previous month, but was far below the January 2011 level of 34.6%. Imports growth surged to 10.4% in January from 0.2% in December. IntelliNews comment: Slovakias foreign trade recorded a huge surplus of EUR 2.4bn last year, up from EUR 778.5mn in 2010, on the back of reviving economic activity mostly in the first half of the year, which affected mainly exports, as the driving force of the countrys economy is production of cars and electronics, sold chiefly to Germany. The revival of domestic demand and household consumption, however, lagged behind, as the central European country is plagued by huge unemployment of nearly 14%. Exports rose 16.9% last year and imports grew 13.6%. We can expect imports to shrink further this year due to reduced consumption of Slovak households amidst the economic slowdown. The development in exports will depend on the extent of the economic stagnation in the eurozone and particularly in Germany.
EUR mn Jan-12 Dec-11 Jan-11 2011
Imports 4,230.2 4,253.9 3,833.4 53,966.1
Exports 4,459.5 4,324.9 4,073.0 56,407.9
Balance 229.3 71.0 239.6 2,441.9
y/y % change
Imports 10.4% 0.2% 30.2% 13.6%
Exports 9.5% 6.9% 34.6% 16.9%
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