ECONOMIC BRIEFS

Retail sales in Slovakia up 8.4% y/y in October

October retail sales in Slovakia posted a year-on-year growth of 8.4%, revealed the Slovak Statistical Office on December 6. In 1998, retails sales have moved up 9% to 310.3 billion Sk ($8.62 billion). The private sector's share of total retail sales was 96.8%.

The tourist industry in October saw 3.7% fewer foreign tourists visiting Slovakia than in the same month last year. From January to October, 28.1 million visitors arrived in Slovakia, up 3.5% y/y.

This October's industrial output was 1% higher than in October 1997. Seasonally adjusted monthly growth was 0.9% over September. Ten months into 1998, industrial production in Slovakia totaled 506.2 billion Sk ($14 billion), 5.8% up compared with the same period last year.

The output of the Slovak building industry in October dropped 21.3% y/y, to a level 10.1% lower than in September. From the beginning of the year, the output of the building industry has increased 0.4% compared to the similar period in 1997 to reach 65.5 billion Sk ($1.82 billion). The share of the private sector on the total output of the building industry was 83%.

October sales in the agricultural sector dropped 8.5% y/y. Agricultural sales for the first ten months of 1998 fell 1.5% from the same period in 1997 to 28.1 billion Sk ($780 million). The private sector's share of total agricultural sales was 95.5%.

The average nominal wage for the first ten months in the industrial sector grew 8.8% (to 9,910 Sk), 6.4% in the building industry (to 9,763 Sk), and 18% in the retail sector (to 7,907 Sk). The year-on-year increase in average real monthly wages in industry was 1.8%, while it was 10.4% in the retail sector. The building industry recorded a 1.5% fall in wages.

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