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Ukraine's BOP Performance in July 2017: Larger Trade Deficit and Lower Net Financial Account Inflows

30 August 2017

Press Release

 

 

According to preliminary data, the current account deficit widened to USD 594 million in July 2017, from USD 518 million in the previous month. The widening of the current account deficit was mainly due to a larger merchandise trade deficit.

 

In the January-through-July period, the current account deficit was recorded at USD 2.2 billion, exceeding last year's figure by UAH 0.8 billion.

 

      In July 2017, merchandise exports stood at USD 2.9 billion, having decreased slightly, compared with the previous month.  The decline in exports was driven by lower grain exports due to the later start of the harvesting campaign this year.

 

Growth in merchandise exports slowed to 9.9% yoy in July, from 13.6% in June, mainly reflecting slower growth in exports of ferrous and non-ferrous metals (1.9% versus 15.1% in June) and a decline in chemical exports (by 17.0%).

 

Despite lower grain exports, food exports remained virtually unchanged (11.0%), mainly due to higher exports of sunflower oil and other food products. Machinery exports also accelerated to 35.7%.

 

In the first seven months of 2017, merchandise exports increased by 22.6%, compared with a 11.7% decline in exports in the same period of the previous year. EU countries have retained their position as Ukraine’s largest trading partner, with their share in total exports reaching 34.9%.

 

      Imports of goods rose to USD 4.0 billion in July.  Growth in imports slowed further to 22.0% yoy, from 30.1% in June, due to a higher comparison base. However, growth in imports outpaced exports.

 

In July, energy exports maintained robust growth, driven by higher imports of energy resources (by 60.6% yoy). Non-energy imports rose by 13.8% yoy, mainly reflecting an increase in machinery (by 28.6% yoy) and chemical imports (by 16.7% yoy) imports.

 

In the January-through-July period,  imports of goods rose by 23.9% yoy (compared with a 4.5% decline in the same period of 2016). EU countries accounted for the bulk of the increase in Ukraine’s imports, with the share of these countries in total imports reaching 38.0%.

 

In July, net financial account inflows declined substantially to USD 302 million due to the redemption of government bonds denominated in foreign currency. Also, FX cash outside banks and net FDI declined at a slower pace (to USD 364 million and USD 137 million, respectively) Meanwhile, corporate sector trade credits increased.

 

In July, net FDI inflows amounted to USD 137 million, 98% of which was directed to the corporate sector. Overall, in the first seven months of 2017, net FDI inflows were estimated at USD 1.3 billion, which was by USD 1.1 billion lower than in the same period of the previous year.

 

In July, the balance of payments recorded a deficit of USD  285 million. Owing to a substantial surplus in the balance of payments in Q2, the overall balance of payments recorded a surplus of USD 764 million in the first seven months of 2017 (versus a surplus of USD 517 million in the same period of 2016).

 

Ukraine's international reserves stood at USD 17.8 billion as of 1 August 2017, covering 3.6 months of future imports.

 

See updated data  for July 2017 under External Sector Statistics section.

 

See the Macroeconomic and Monetary Review (August 2017) for greater details on macroeconomic developments in July 2017, which will be published on 31 August 2017.      

 

 

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Last modification   30.08.2017