The revival in Bulgaria's industry over the recent months has placed this country among the EU members with the strongest industrial growth for the past 12 months. This shows in Eurostat figures about Europe's industry. According to EU statistics, Bulgaria ranks third as per annual industrial production growth in February among all 27 EU nations. Year-on-year, growth is more than 15 percent. Under this index only Sweden and Estonia are ahead of Bulgaria. It is worth mentioning that a year ago Bulgaria saw one of the strongest declines in industry. Now the weakest growth of industrial production is seen by the Netherlands and Denmark.
Data from the Bulgarian National Statistical Institute suggest that the major contribution into the overall industrial growth comes from the processing industry. Industry growth has pushed Bulgarian exports up. Bulgaria has exported to EU markets close to 72 percent more goods and services. This is in NSI estimates meaning that Bulgaria's exports to the EU had an equivalent of EUR 0.9 billion. Bulgaria's main trade partners include Germany, Italy, Greece, Romania and France. They account for 70 percent of Bulgarian exports to EU. There has been a considerable growth of exports to Portugal, Luxembourg and Estonia. On the other hand, exports to Latvia and Slovakia are down. On the Bulgarian market, European companies have sold goods and services worth about EUR 1 billion, accounting for a 38 percent growth.
The biggest increase of imported goods comes from Portugal, Slovakia and Ireland, and the biggest decline, from the Czech Republic, Lithuania and Cyprus. Bulgaria's foreign trade balance with EU for January is positive - about EUR 45 million. Outside EU, Bulgaria's major trade partners include Turkey, Russia, Serbia, Macedonia, South Africa and China, accounting for 55 percent of exports to third countries. /Source: BNR/