ECONOMY

Exports to Bulgaria in decline

Greek exports and direct investment to Bulgaria showed the biggest decline of recent years in the first six months of 2009, according to preliminary figures of the National Statistical Service (NSS). The picture regarding imports from Bulgaria was very similar over the same period. The volume of bilateral trade reached 955.3 million euros in the January-June period, posting a 23.6 decline relative to the same period in 2008, which in turn had shown a 37.6 percent drop compared to 2007. Greek exports to Bulgaria contracted by 30.5 percent to 453 million euros, against a yearly increase of 25.8 percent in the same half of 2008. Bulgarian exports to Greece fell 34 percent this year in H1 after a 52.6 percent increase last year in the same six-month period. All this has resulted in the expansion of Greece’s trade surplus with Bulgaria to 50.7 million euros from 33.1 million in 2008. Exports to Bulgaria amount to 6.4 percent of all Greek exports in the first half of 2009, down from 7.4 percent in the first half of last year.