Trade deficit remains high |

The Bank of Greece announced on Thursday that its current account deficit reached €2 billion, an increase of €646.6 million in May this year compared to May 2021. In the five months from January to his May, the current account deficit reached €10.1 billion, marking a significant year-on-year increase of €4.1 billion. The trade deficit widened because imports exceeded exports. In May alone, the goods deficit reached €3.24 billion, with exports up 49.2% at current prices and 8.6% at real prices, and imports up 59.9% at current prices and 32.5% at real prices.

The trade deficit did not rise so sharply in June, but remained at a very high level, according to data released on Friday by the independent statistical office ELSTAT.

Preliminary data for June showed that imports increased by 53.5% compared to June 2021 to €8.26 billion, while exports increased by 59.8% to €5.43 billion. Excluding petroleum products, imports grew by 25.6% year-on-year, and exports by 24.1%.

The June trade deficit was €2.83 billion, up 42.7% from June 2021. This is definitely a better performance than his €3.09 billion recorded in May, an 84.7% increase from May 2021.

Despite the improvement, the deficit in the first half of 2022 remains very high at €17.59 billion, according to ELSTAT. Including petroleum products, it increased by 71.6% from the previous year. Otherwise, the trade deficit increase he was 50.3%.

Total imports in the first half of 2022 were €43.61 billion, 51.1% higher than the same period in 2021. Excluding petroleum products, imports he increased by 34.1%.

At the same time, exports amounted to 26.01 billion euros, an increase of 39.8% over the previous year. Excluding petroleum products, it increased by 24.1%, lagging import growth in both cases.

According to analysis by the Panhellenic Exporters’ Association, 2022 export values ​​increased across all product categories. Petroleum products top the list, up 88.1%, followed by industrial products (43.8%), machinery (27.8%), food and livestock (18.3%), raw materials (11.6%), chemicals (9.2%), and distillation. liquor and tobacco (7.7%) and oil (5.7%).

The sharp increase in both imports and exports is not surprising, but a result of the full reopening of economic activity following the Covid-19 pandemic. But in the event of a global recession, there is concern that both will be affected, and in the case of Greece, exports will be hit harder than exports. There are already warning signs. Data from the Purchasing Managers Index recently released by the Foundation for Economic and Industrial Research (IOBE) show that foreign orders for Greek manufacturers are declining.

“The war in Ukraine and its impact on the energy sector and supply chains is putting pressure on the competitiveness of Greek products,” said Christina Sakelaridi, president of the Exporters Association. Trade deficit remains high |

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