Comments on the geographical orientation of external trade for March 2011
Prague, 20 May 2011 – According to the preliminary data of the Czech Statistical Office’s cross-border statistics, in March the Czech Republic’s exports grew faster than imports and the country’s surplus on trade was the highest since the establishment of the Czech Republic. After 12 months, imports stopped outpacing exports. Exports and imports grew by 17.9% and 17.4%, respectively, year-on-year in current prices. Surplus on trade, amounting to CZK 21.5 billion, was CZK 4.2 billion higher year-on-year.
Surplus on trade with EU27 countries amounted to CZK 63.7 billion, while deficit on trade with non-EU27 countries amounted to CZK 42.2 billion; in March 2010, the deficit was CZK 9.3 billion more favourable. The balance of external trade was favourably influenced mainly by growth in the surplus on trade in machines and transport equipment. Surplus increased in trade with Germany, the Netherlands, France, the UK and Slovakia; deficit on trade with Russia decreased. On the other hand, deficit widened in trade with China, and, moving from surplus to deficit, the balance of trade with Ukraine deteriorated.
For January to March 2011 it is apparent that Czech exports are driven by neighbouring countries headed by Germany. But the share of almost one-fifth, held by the remaining neighbours, i.e. Slovakia, Austria and Poland, is not negligible. And in exports to Poland in the above period of time, statistics register the largest growth index, 31%, together with their growing share in total Czech exports, currently 6.2%.
“Bank guarantees have steadily been the most frequently used Trade Finance products in trade with Poland. In this respect, the construction industry and building materials are dominant, followed by mechanical production and engineering services. Clients usually require guarantees in English, in the local currency PLN but also in EUR. In the case of public contracting authorities’ requirements, it is possible to have a bank guarantee issued by a Polish bank in the Polish language while using a counter-guarantee. On the other hand, documentary payments are not used so much, despite the fact that according to a survey of payment discipline, published by Creditreform in May 2010, payment discipline in Poland is, surprisingly, the worst among all 13 countries of central and south-eastern Europe – on average, the payment of invoices takes 123 days,” said Jaromír Chabr, Head of Trade and Export Finance at KB.
Incoming payments for 2010 dropped by about 8% compared with 2009, from CZK 19,511 million to CZK 17,990 million. Payments related to trade in non-ferrous metals reached the largest volumes. The volume of outgoing payments for 2010 increased by almost 30% compared with 2009, from CZK 18,970 million to CZK 24,494 million. “Payments related to trade in conductors for electricity transmission and sale of sorted fuel are among those with the largest volume. Following an overall decline in payment exchanges two years ago, we are registering a renewed growth,” added Jana Švábenská, Executive Director for Operations at KB.
For 25 May 2011, Komerční banka is preparing a conference highlighting the specifics of trading with Poland and Austria. The conference will be held in the building of the Ministry of Industry and Trade in Prague. The registration form and programme are available on the website of the co-organiser, CzechTrade.
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