Shipping income jumps 15 percent

Demand from abroad for Greek goods and services is providing some relief for the country’s serious economic woes, according to figures released yesterday. Data on shipping showed that the sector is continuing to expand on the back of improved demand for global transport services, stemming mainly from China. The Bank of Greece, the country’s central bank, said that income from transport activities, which are almost exclusively shipping-related, in the first nine months of the year rose 15 percent to 10.4 billion euros, after dipping by an annual rate of 30 percent in the previous period. Income from the sale of goods, including petroleum products, abroad also rose between January to August, gaining 6.8 percent to 10.6 billion euros, data showed. On the tourism front, however, the figures were less positive. Income raised from the tourism sector, which accounts for 18 percent of the economy, fell at an annual pace of 7.2 percent to 7.05 billion euros. Visitor numbers this year are expected to remain roughly in line with last year’s levels but industry sources expect tourism-related income to drop by 7 to 8 percent year-on-year. An unusual bright spot appeared from the data regarding industrial orders. The Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT) said yesterday that new industrial orders rose 13.6 percent year-on-year in August, after dipping 25 percent in the same period a year earlier. A breakdown of the figures showed that an 11 percent drop in domestic demand for new industrial orders was easily offset by a 63 percent jump in demand from abroad. Provisional ELSTAT data indicated that the largest increases related to orders for metals, computers and machinery.

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