Actual (Dec): CZK 10.47bn
Consensus: CZK 5.0bn
Previous (Nov): CZK 19.84bn
The Czech trade balance came out above expectations. Exports showed 10.1 pct y/y growth, keeping previous pace. Imports increased by 5.1 pct. The good result was indicated by the industrial production data released on Monday. The industrial sales were driven upward by foreign demand and by sales of vehicles. The trade balance figures draw a similar picture.
Exports of vehicles increased by 8 pct y/y and remain the key component of the export side of the balance. The positive contribution of machinery and telecommunication equipment also improved. On the other side there are higher imports of oil and gas, mostly due to a rise of prices.
The full-year 2011 figures show that exports increased by 13.2 pct while imports grew by 10.9 pct. The trade surplus reached CZK 191.4bn, compared with CZK 121.24bn in 2010. The data prove the positive foreign trade contribution to the GDP growth. This year we expect the trade balance turnover to grow slower, while the surplus should decrease slightly.