By Daniel Stroe – Bucharest
Romania came first in the latest European industrial production rankings available for February, compared to the same period of 2012, according to figures released today by Eurostat, the European statistics agency.
Overall, the industrial output indicator has decreased by 3,1 per cent in the 17 member Euro Zone and by 2,5 per cent in the 27 member EU, according to the same statistics.
Eurostat’s annual comparison also shows that industrial production has increased in six member states and decreased in 16 member states. The largest decreases were registered in Finland (-7.5%), Spain (-6.5%), Greece (-3.9%) and Italy (-3.8%), and the highest increases in Romania (+6.5%), Bulgaria (+5.1%) and Slovenia (+3.3%), says the report.
According to a monthly comparison, the industrial output has decreased in 12 member states and increased in ten from January to February. The highest increases were registered in the Netherlands and Slovenia (both +3.4%), the Czech Republic (+1.6%) and Portugal (+1.3%), Romania and Great Britain (+1%) and the largest decreases in Estonia and Malta (both -3.9%), Lithuania (-3.7%) and Denmark (-3.0%).
Romanian industrial production has been fairly steady since 2011, when it recovered from a serious drop beginning in 2008 due to the global economic crisis.
Speaking for Digi TV, Romanian President Traian Basescu said last night he was optimistic as concerns Romania’s economic performance at this point. „The omens are good. The industrial orders have increased by 10 per cent compared to the first semester of 2012, the exports have gone up by six per cent and we have a very big increase in the first two months’ exports outside the communitarian space which shows Romanian businessmen are reorienting to traditional markets as well” he underlined.
He pointed out Romania still lags behind in terms of EU funds absorption and warned against the effects populism may have on the economy. The ruling coalition in Bucharest has a 70 per cent majority in Parliament which enables it to easily pass any sort of measures.
Last year, Romania had an economic growth of 0.7 per cent, a little more than the 0,3 per cent growth initially announced, according to the National Statistics Institute which said the change comes after figures showing industry and the retail did better in 2012 than previously estimated.