BUSINESS IN SHORT

Slovakia's foreign trade ends May in surplus

A SIGNIFICANT slowdown in the growth of imports helped Slovakia’s foreign trade to swing into surplus in May. After two consecutive months of trade deficits, Slovakia ended May Sk4.12 billion (€136 million) in surplus, the ČTK newswire reported, citing data from the Slovak Statistics Office. The trade deficit in April was Sk6.76 billion.

A SIGNIFICANT slowdown in the growth of imports helped Slovakia’s foreign trade to swing into surplus in May. After two consecutive months of trade deficits, Slovakia ended May Sk4.12 billion (€136 million) in surplus, the ČTK newswire reported, citing data from the Slovak Statistics Office. The trade deficit in April was Sk6.76 billion.

The May results were better than analysts’ estimates, which anticipated a deficit of around Sk1 billion.

“We regard the figure announced as positive,” said Marek Gábriš, an analyst with the ČSOB bank, commenting on the latest foreign trade results. In particular, he pointed to a significant slow-down in year-on-year growth of exports as well as imports.

Compared with April, total imports of energy raw materials and total imports to the electro-technical industry reported notable decreases, the Statistics Office wrote.

Exports in May 2008 rose 6.3 percent (to Sk129.1 billion) compared to May 2007. Imports grew 0.2 percent to Sk124.98 billion year-on-year. During previous months, imports as well as exports had reported double-digit percentage growth.

Martin Lenko, an analyst with VÚB Banka, expects the growth in exports as well as imports to have accelerated in June.


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