It was affected mostly by the growth in industrial manufacturing (10.9 percent), mining and quarrying (8.6 percent), and electricity, gas, steam and air-conditioning supply (6.4 percent).
“The data from the beginning of the year indicate that the Slovak industry began to restore, with the growth being distributed among several industrial sectors,” Ľubomír Koršňák, analyst with UniCredit Bank Czech Republic and Slovakia, wrote in a memo.
The March statistics may have been positively affected by Easter when some companies may produce goods in advance, but even after taking this effect into consideration, we may still talk about the relatively robust industrial growth, the analyst added.
The increase in the total industrial production was affected by the growth in all activities, particularly in manufacturing of transport equipment by 9.2 percent y/y; manufacturing of electrical equipment by 29.2 percent y/y; manufacturing of basic metals and fabricated metal products except machinery and equipment by 11.4 percent y/y; manufacturing of food, beverages and tobacco products by 32.2 percent y/y; and in other manufacturing, repair and installation of machinery and equipment by 18.4 percent y/y.
Regarding the main industrial groupings, production of non-durable consumer goods rose by 24.6 percent y/y; production of durable consumer goods by 11.2 percent y/y; production of intermediate goods by 10.4 percent y/y; production of investment goods by 8.9 percent y/y; and production related to energy by 7 percent y/y.
After seasonal adjustment, industrial production grew by 2 percent y/y in March 2015 compared with the previous month.
On average, in the 1st quarter of the year, the index grew by 5.3 percent y/y, of which in electricity, gas, steam and air-conditioning supply by 7.2 percent, and in mining and quarrying and manufacturing by 5.1 percent each.
Koršňák finds it positive that the industrial growth occurred across the sectors. Only the producers of consumer electronics reported a drop, but their production remained above the last March’s level.
“For the first time since the beginning of the crisis we could see the annual rise in production in all industrial fields,” Koršňák said, adding that the highest values were reported by crucial export sectors: automotive, engineering and, after seasonal adjustments, also producers of electrical equipment.
Also metallurgists reported strong annual growth, but their maximum production did not exceed last year’s numbers, the analyst continued. Additionally the chemical industry and some low-tech sectors reported growth in production in March. Food producers also continued to grow after they increased their production by nearly one third. Businesses in the textile and furniture industry reported two-digit annual growth, Koršňák added.
12. May 2015 at 13:36 | Compiled by Spectator staff