Bulgaria's Economy Shows Moderate Growth in Third Quarter Amid Sector Shifts

Business » FINANCE | December 7, 2023, Thursday // 12:21
Bulgaria: Bulgaria's Economy Shows Moderate Growth in Third Quarter Amid Sector Shifts

In the third quarter of 2023, the Bulgarian economy experienced a 0.4% growth compared to the preceding quarter, maintaining a similar growth pattern seen earlier. Announced by the National Statistical Institute (NSI), the economic expansion, measuring 1.8% annually, remains consistent with the previously estimated 1.7%, showing a slight decline from the 2.0% growth in the second quarter.

Key drivers for this growth included a 0.6% rise in final consumption and a substantial 7.9% increase in gross fixed capital formation compared to the prior quarter. On an annual basis, final consumption rose by 4.3%, and gross fixed capital formation surged by 9.6%. Notably, the produced GDP for this period totaled BGN 48.4661 billion, equivalent to BGN 7,522 (EUR 3,846) per capita.

Sectors contributing to the economy showed significant shifts. The agricultural sector saw a reduction in its contribution to the economy's added value, decreasing to 5.3% from the prior year's quarter. Conversely, the industrial sector increased its contribution to the added value by 1.0%, reaching 28.8%, while the service sector significantly bolstered its share to 65.9% from 64.0% in the corresponding quarter of 2022.

Moreover, notable fluctuations were observed in trade activities. Exports of goods and services increased by 0.2% from the previous quarter but fell by 3.1% from a year ago. Imports exhibited a contrasting pattern, rising by 1.5% from the prior quarter but declining by 5.5% compared to the previous year. Despite the surge in imports, Bulgaria managed a positive foreign trade balance of BGN 3.6156 billion, accounting for 7.4% of the GDP.

These changes were also reflected in labor statistics. The GDP per employed person grew by 2.1% year-on-year, with 3.6105 million individuals employed in the economy. The structure of employment showed a shift towards the service sector while declining in agriculture and industry.

Lastly, labor productivity displayed significant variations across sectors. Industries exhibited higher productivity at BGN 14.0372 thousand gross value added per employee, whereas services recorded an average of BGN 11,893 per employed person. Conversely, labor productivity remained lowest in agriculture at BGN 3,822.4 per employee.

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Tags: Bulgarian, economy, GDP, growth

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