Croatia's 2019 GDP up by 2.9 pct on the back of exports and household spending

NEWS 28.02.2020 13:00
Source: Ilustracija

In Q4 2019 Croatia's GDP grew by 2.5 percent year-on-year, and although this was the 22nd consecutive quarter which posted a positive growth rate, the figure indicates a slowdown from the previous quarter, when GDP went up by 2.9 percent year-on-year, the country's state statistics bureau said on Friday.

At the same time, Croatia’s GDP for 2019 was up 2.9 percent from the year before, accelerating from 2.65 percent year-on-year growth in 2018, preliminary estimates showed.

Higher GDP growth for the whole of 2019 is attributed primarily to a strong result in Q1 2019, when GDP posted a 4.1 percent year-on-year increase, before slowing down to 2.4 percent in Q2 2019, and picking up again in Q3 2019 to 2.9 percent.

The largest positive impact in Q4 2019 came from upticks in exports and household spending. Household spending grew by 4 percent compared to the same period the year before, which is a faster growth rate than in Q3 2019, when household consumption went up by 3.1 percent.

Croatia’s exports of goods and services grew in Q4 2019 by 5.6 percent on the year, a slightly higher rate from the 5.1 percent year-on-year growth in Q3 2019. Broken down by type, exports of goods inched up by 2.1 percent, while exports of services jumped up 12.1 percent.

As for imports, they inched up slightly 0.1 percent year-on-year in Q4 2019, considerably lower from the previous quarter, when it rose by 4.3 percent on the year. The imports of goods rose by 0.8 percent, while the imports of services dropped by 3.1 percent.

Government spending also increased in Q4 2019 by 3.5 percent year-on-year, accelerating from Q3 2019 when it grew by 2.9 percent.

According to the state statistics bureau’s seasonally adjusted data, GDP in Q4 2019 inched up 0.3 percent quarter-on-quarter, or 2.7 percent year-on-year, higher than in the European Union as a whole, as EU’s statistics service Eurostat recently reported that the EU economy grew by 1.2 percent year-on-year in Q4 2019, and 0.1 percent quarter-on-quarter.

However, the Friday report comes only a day after the European Commission released its European Semester Winter Report, in which it said that Croatia’s GDP growth rate still lags behind other post-communist EU member countries in Central and Eastern Europe.

They illustrated this by saying that in terms of purchasing power, Croatia’s GDP per capita in 2018 was only 63 percent of EU’s average, exactly where it had been ten years earlier in 2008.

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