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Hungary Has Trade Deficit for Fourth Month in a Row

MTI-Hungary Today 2021.12.09.

Hungary, an export-driven economy where trade surpluses are the norm, had a trade deficit for the fourth month in a row in October, a first reading of data released by the Central Statistical Office (KSH) on Thursday shows.

Exports edged up 0.9 percent year-on-year to 10.368 billion euors, while imports climbed 14.4 percent to 10.703 billion euros to give Hungary a trade deficit of 335 million euros.

In a month-on-month comparison, KSH noted that exports were flat and imports increased by 1.9 percent.

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Trade with other European Union member states accounted for about 75 percent of Hungary’s exports and 71 percent of imports in October.

For the period January-October, exports increased by 13.9 percent to 98.200 billion euros and imports rose by 17.7 percent to 95.954 billion euros. The trade surplus came to 2.247 billion euros.

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Takarékbank chief analyst Gergely Suppan said the fresh data show the impact on exports of the shortage of chips and other parts, supply chain interruptions and delivery bottlenecks. The trade surplus could narrow to 2 billion euros this year from 5.62 billion euros in 2020, hit as well by worsening terms of trade and higher energy and commodities prices, he added.

ING Bank senior analyst Péter Virovácz said the trade balance is unlikely to improve in the coming months as household spending and corporate investments continue to boost imports. An improvement could come from the second half of 2022, as long as global supply chain problems are resolved, he added.

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In the featured photo illustration: Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó. Photo by Zoltán Balogh/MTI