Economic and Foreign Trade Activity
According to preliminary estimate of the Statistical Office, real y-o-y GDP growth measured 3.7% in Q3 2018.
In the year to September, industrial production rose 2.3% relative to the same period of 2017, led by the further growth of manufacturing (2.7%). More than three quarters of sectors within manufacturing recorded growth, while the strongest positive contribution came from the production of petroleum products, base metals and construction material.
Seasonally adjusted, manufacturing expanded in September by 2.3% m-o-m. The key contributor to the monthly growth in manufacturing was higher production of motor vehicles and chemical and pharmaceutical products.
Based on data of the Statistical Office, September retail trade turnover went up by a real 5.9% y-o-y. In the year to September, it was up by 4.0% in real terms relative to the same period of 2017.
In the period January–September, commodity exports and imports in euro terms rose by 7.7% and 12.8% y-o-y, respectively. Export growth was driven mostly by manufacturing exports which gained 9.8% in the period observed. Looking ahead, impetus to export growth is also expected to come from the recovery of agricultural product exports, given the excellent agricultural season this year. Import growth, on the other hand, was led mainly by stronger imports of intermediate and capital goods for the needs of industrial production and investments.