By Daniel Stroe – Bucharest
The Romanian economy grew by 3.5% last year compared to 2012, with industry and agriculture playing a major role in the economic recovery following years of crisis, show the latest figures released today by the country’s institute of statistics (INS).
The country’s GDP rose to about 631 billion lei last year (about 140 billion Euros), according to the same source. Over the last quarter of 2013, the three months GDP rose by 1.5% to 164 billion lei (about 36 billion Euros), a 5.1% increase compared to the same period of 2012.
INS pointed out that a large contribution to the 3.5% economic growth in 2013 came from the industry and agriculture sectors. According to the statistics, industry had a 30 per cent contribution in the country’s last year GDP, while agriculture had a 5.6% contribution. Both the industry and agriculture’s activity volumes grew by 8.1 per cent and, respectively, 23.4% last year.
Exports also had a 4.1% contribution to last year’s GDP, following a 12.8% growth of goods and services exports, while about 60.9 per cent was the contribution of households’ expenses.
The IT&C, real estate transactions, professional, technical and scientific activities, administrative and support services also had a positive contribution to last year’s economic growth while the construction sector, retail, transport and storage, hotels and restaurants and financial intermediations and insurance had a negative contribution.
INS’s statistics on the economic growth went beyond the estimates of both the Romanian officials and the IMF whose calculations pointed to 3%. Romania is set to have an economic growth of about 2.2 – 2.5 per cent. Many analysts say this year’s growth largely depends on the developments on the home and European political stage. Romania will have both Euro and presidential elections this year and many analysts warned that already traditional populist measures over 2014 may imperil the fragile economic recovery.
Two weeks ago, the Romanian Parliament raised the salaries of mayors of communes by up to 50% and mayors of small towns by almost 17%, while the government is seeking to adopt some measures with electoral impact, such a temporary partial exemption from banks debts for low income citizens.