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Foreign trade deficit at €6.1bn in January-July


Polish exports of goods were worth €80.5bn in the first seven months of 2012, while imports totaled €86.6bn, according to preliminary data from the Central Statistical Office (GUS). This translates into a nominal increase of 3% y-o-y and a decline of 1.5% y-o-y, respectively. As a result, the country’s foreign trade deficit amounted to €6.1bn, compared with €9.7bn in the corresponding period of 2011.

Poland’s trade balance with the countries of the European Union as well as with the wider category of developed countries, improved markedly over this period, showing surpluses of €11.7bn and €10.8bn, respectively. The balance with developing countries also improved, with the deficit narrowing by 7.2% y-o-y to €10.4bn. By contrast, the deficit with the countries of Southern and Eastern Europe increased by over a fifth to €6.6bn.

Of Poland’s main trading partners, by far the highest increases in exports were to Russia (up by 25.1% y-o-y) and Ukraine (up by 21.6% y-o-y). Exports to Great Britain and Slovakia went up by 7.6% y-o-y, to the Netherlands by 3.7% y-o-y, and to the Czech Republic by 1.7% y-o-y. Exports to Germany, Poland’s main trading partner accounting for just over a quarter of the country’s total exports of goods, returned to positive ground with an increase of 0.6% y-o-y for January-July, compared with a decline of 1% y-o-y in H1. At the same time, exports to France were down by 0.6% y-o-y, to Sweden by 6.3% y-o-y, and to Italy by 8.9% y-o-y.

The biggest increase in imports was also with Russia (up by 24.8% y-o-y), followed at a wide distance by the United States (up by 8.6% y-o-y). Imports from China were up by 1.7% y-o-y and from the Netherlands by 0.8% y-o-y. Imports from the remaining top-ten countries were lower than in January-July 2011. The smallest decrease was in imports from the Czech Republic (down by 2.3% y-o-y). Imports from Germany declined by 5% y-o-y. The biggest drop was recorded in imports from Great Britain (down by 10.7% y-o-y).

We forecast that in 2012 as a whole Polish exports of goods will rise by 2.9%, and imports by 0.5%. As a result, the foreign trade deficit will amount to €12.7bn.

Foreign trade in Poland (%, y-o-y), 2004-2011 and January-July 2012

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