Bulgaria: Economic growth moderates in second quarter
August 12, 2011
In the second quarter, GDP expanded 1.9% over the same period last year, according to the flash estimate released by the National Statistical Institute (NSI) on 12 August. The second quarter reading was below the 3.4% year-on-year expansion recorded in the first. Compared to the previous quarter, GDP increased just 0.1% in seasonally and working-day adjusted terms (Q1: +0.6% quarter-on-quarter). The quarterly reading reflected a weaker external sector, whereas domestic demand improved markedly. Private consumption increased 1.1% yoy (Q1: +0.8% yoy) while gross fixed investment surged to a 9.5% expansion (Q1: +1.6% yoy). On the other hand, the net contribution from the external sector to overall economic growth deteriorated sharply, with imports outpacing exports. Exports of goods and services slowed to an 11.6% expansion over the same period last year, which came in well below the 20.1% increase seen in the first quarter. Meanwhile, imports moderated slightly from an 8.6% expansion in the first quarter to a 7.9% expansion in the second. According to the calendar of statistical surveys, the NSI will publish its official quarterly GDP estimates for the second quarter on 6 September. The government expects the economy to expand 3.6% this year and 4.1% in 2012.