Bulgaria’s economy posted 0.8 per cent growth in the first quarter of the year, the National Statistical Institute (NSI) said in a flash estimate on May 16. In real terms, gross domestic product (GDP) in Bulgaria in January-March was 19.6 billion leva, or 10 billion euro.
In annual terms, economic growth was 3.4 per cent, unchanged from the annual growth recorded at the end of the previous two quarters. NSI is due to announce preliminary growth figures for the first quarter of 2017 on June 7.
The flash estimate data showed an increase of 4.1 per cent in domestic consumption on an annual basis, which offset a 5.4 per cent declilne in gross fixed capital formation. Exports were 7.2 per cent higher on an annual basis (as well as 2.2 per cent up compared to the previous quarter), while imports rose by 10.6 per cent on an annual basis and 5.3 per cent compared to Q4 2016.
Bulgaria was one of 20 EU countries to record economic growth during the first quarter, with the EU economy as a whole and the euro zone both posting growth of 0.5 per cent, according to a flash estimate by EU’s statistics body Eurostat. In the previous quarter, the EU28 growth rate was 0.6 per cent and the euro zone’s economy expanded by 0.5 per cent, Eurostat said.
Among the 21 EU member states to report GDP figures, Bulgaria ranked in the middle of the pack, tied for ninth with Spain and Slovakia, while Romania had the strongest growth at 1.7 per cent, followed by Finland (1.6 per cent) and Latvia (1.5 per cent).
Only Greece reported economic decline (-0.1 per cent), while seven countries were yet to report first-quarter data (Croatia, Estonia, Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta, Slovenia and Sweden).
In annual terms, the EU economy grew by two per cent compared to the first quarter of 2016, while the euro zone economy was up by 1.7 per cent.
(Photo: Zsuzsanna Kilian/sxc.hu)