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Serbia’s foreign trade trends: Insights from 2024’s initial months

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In the initial two months of 2024, Serbia’s overall foreign trade turnover hit 10.55 billion euros, marking a modest 0.6 percent rise compared to the same period in the previous year, as stated by the Republic Statistical Office (RSO).

Export of goods in euros amounted to approximately 4.6 billion euros, showcasing a 3.2 percent growth, while imports were valued at 5.88 billion euros, indicating a slight decline of 1.3 percent from the corresponding period last year.

Expressed in euros, the trade deficit stands at 1.2 billion euros, marking a 15.4 percent increase from the previous year.

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The coverage of exports by imports now stands at 79.2 percent, surpassing the previous year’s figure of 75.7 percent.

The most significant portion of foreign trade occurred with countries where Serbia has existing free trade agreements, with European Union member states accounting for 60.8 percent of the total trade volume.

Following closely are the CEFTA countries, with Serbia enjoying a trade surplus of 427.8 million euros. Exports to these countries amounted to 645.2 million euros, while imports reached 217.4 million euros, resulting in an export coverage of imports at 296.8 percent.

Among individual countries, notable trade surpluses were recorded with neighboring nations such as Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, and North Macedonia. These surpluses were mainly due to exports of various goods like electric energy, electrical conductors, and retail drugs.

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Additionally, Bulgaria, Slovakia, Sweden, the Czech Republic, Croatia, Austria, and the United Kingdom were among the countries where Serbia enjoyed trade surpluses.

On the other hand, the largest trade deficit was observed in trade with China, primarily due to imports of cell phones for network stations and laptops. Following China, deficits were recorded with various countries including the Russian Federation, Hungary, Turkey, and Italy, among others.

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