Romania’s trade deficit in the 12-month period to April soared by 38% y/y to reach €26.6bn, or 10.7% of the GDP up from 8.8% of GDP in April 2021, according to data released by the statistics office INS.
Detailed data for the first four months of the year show that the rising price of commodities is pushing up both exports and imports.
Imports expanded by 24.3% y/y while exports increased by 20.4% y/y, in the 12-month period to April.
The trade deficit-to-GDP ratio in April 2019, before the pandemic, was 7.9%.
In April 2022 alone, the trade gap widened by an impressive 65% y/y to €2.8bn as exports increased by 10.4% y/y to €6.89bn but imports surged more than twice as fast by 21.8% y/y to €9.71bn.
The trade deficit thus diverged from the medium-term trend, it was slightly larger, amid slightly less intense foreign trade activity compared to the previous months.
In the first four months of the year, the 25.5% y/y rise in imports (to €38.9bn) was driven by the doubling of the imports of fuels to €3.9bn (9.9% of total imports) while the import of commodities classified in the category of “raw materials” surged by 34% y/y to €7.7bn or nearly 20% of GDP.
On the exports side, the 20.7% rise (to €28.9bn) was helped by the 56% y/y advance of exports of raw food (animals included) to €2.6bn (9% of total exports) while other raw materials (non-food) increased by 57% y/y to €1.3bn (4.7% of total exports).
Fuel exports also surged by 83% y/y to €1.4bn (4.9% of total exports).