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In August, Balance of Payments Records Minor Surplus of USD 27 million

28 September 2018

Press Release


Due to decrease in the commodity trade deficit, the deficit of the balance of payments current account reduced to USD 601 million. This was driven primarily by slowing of the import annual rate increase which made a considerable impact compared with slowing of the export growth.


In January-August, the current account deficit reached USD 2.1 billion (from USD 833 million over the same period last year).


In August, volume of commodity export increased by 10.5% to USD 3.7 billion. Minor slowing of the export increase, as compared with July, was caused primarily by reduction of metal production volumes and complications with the Azov Sea freights. As a result, the export of metals slowed down to 11.2% yoy. At the same time, the food export increased by 6.3% yoy and hit August record due to the growth in the global wheat prices and the increase in volumes of oil-bearing crops harvested.


In general, in January–August, the export increased by 11.6% compared with the same period of the previous year to USD 28.2 billion. 


In August, commodity import came to almost USD 5 billion, however, the increase slowed down significantly (to 17.4% yoy). Primarily, this increase was caused by import of energy and chemical products. In particular, the increase of energy import slowed to 19.9% yoy due to the drop in import of coal and oil products. Import of pharmaceuticals decreased due to slower import of chemicals (to 5% yoy). However, domestic demand stipulated rapid increase in import of machinery (20.5% yoy), industrial (36.4% yoy), and food (13.1% yoy) products.


In January–August, the export increased in total by 15.3%, as compared with the same period of the previous year, and reached USD 35.4 billion. 


Net financial account inflows amounted to USD 625 million in August 2018 (compared with USD 142 million of the same period of the previous year). In contrast to the previous months, it was mainly supported by the public sector  due to placement of external government bonds. As a result, the net general public sector loans increased by USD 0.6 billion, while the private sector external position merely changed.


In August, net FDI inflows amounted to USD 176 million where 40% were allocated to the real sector as investments into the equity. In general, for the period from January to August, net FDI inflows were estimated at USD 1.4 billion (including 29% of bail-in transactions).


Overall, for the period from January to August 2018, net financial account inflow recorded USD 2.2 billion (over eight months of 2017 it made USD 2.1 billion).


In August, the balance of payments recorded a surplus of USD 27 million. As of the beginning of September, the international reserves amounted to USD 17.2 billion covering 2.9 months of future imports.


The updated data for August 2018 are available under the External Sector Statistics section.


For more details on the balance of payments see the Macroeconomic and Monetary Review (September 2018) published on 28 September 2018.

Last modification   28.09.2018