ArmInfo. Armenia's foreign trade turnover in January-August 2021 amounted to $ 5 billion, with an improvement in y-o-y dynamics to 12.7% growth (from a 10.2% decline a year earlier), and with a noticeable excess of the 2% pre-COVID growth rate. Moreover, exports (21.8%) showed higher growth than imports (7.7%), with the trend emerging from the downward 6% and 12.4%, respectively, a year earlier, and with a significant excess of the pre-COVID upward rates of 4.6 % and 0.7%, respectively.
According to the final data of the Statistical Committee of the Republic of Armenia, the volume of exports reached $ 1.9 billion, while imports reached $ 3.1 billion.
In August 2021, the trend of foreign trade turnover changed from an 2.6% upward to a 4.7% downward, due to a deterioration in the dynamics of imports from 10.7% growth to 8.2% decline, with exchange of the export trend from 9.1% decline to 1.4% growth. And in August 2021, compared to August 2020, the decline in foreign trade turnover by 0.1% was provoked by a decline in imports by 7.3% with an increase in exports by 13.9%, which nevertheless looked much better than the dynamics of a year ago, when the 4% decline in foreign trade turnover was due to the almost similar downward rates of exports and imports - by 3.8% and 4.1%, respectively.
The negative foreign trade balance decreased by 9.3% per annum in January-August 2021 (against a 19.2% decline in the same period in 2020), amounting to $ 1.2 billion. Moreover, the negative balance of Armenia's foreign trade with the EAEU countries amounted to $ 506.9 million, having decreased on an y-o- y terms by 16.3% (against 31% growth a year earlier), against the background of an increase in exports by 30.8% with an increase in imports by 2.9%. And the negative balance of Armenia's foreign trade with the EU countries amounted to $ 133.8 million, decreasing by 43.7% on a y-o-y terms (against 8.6% decline a year earlier), as a result of improving the dynamics of exports and imports towards growth by 49.9% and 7.9%, respectively. The main buyers of Armenian goods in exports in January-August 2021 are Russia - 27.3%, China - 14.4%, Switzerland - 11.5%, Bulgaria - 8.7% and the Netherlands - 5.4%. The main suppliers of imported products to Armenia in total imports are Russia - 32.9%, China - 14.9%, Iran - 8.3%, Italy - 4.7% and Germany - 4.1%. All export items in January-August showed growth, except for machines / apparatus, products made of stone, gypsum, cement, products made of precious metals, oils of vegetable and animal origin, the dynamics of which is still in decline (3.7-44.9%). The leading item of Armenian export - mineral products - increased by 33.8% to $ 705.2 million, while the second in terms of export volume - prepared foodstuffs - increased by 8.1% to $ 360.9 million. In third place in terms of exports - base metals and products from them with an increase of 45% to $ 217.5 million, in the 4th place - precious metals and products from them with a decline of 13.5% to $ 196.7 million, and in the 5th place - products of plant origin with an increase of 48, 1% to $ 121.1 million In imports, the leading item showed a more modest upward trend in January-August: mineral products grew by 14.6% to $ 554.2 million, 8% to $ 508.9 million. Despite a 0.2% decline, chemical products held the third place with a volume of $ 270.4 million. The fourth place in terms of volumes is held by prepared foodstuffs with an increase of 3.8% to $ 254.9 million, the 5th place is still occupied by base metals and products from them with an increase of 0.1% to $ 224.8 million, and the 6th place is held by textile products with an increase of 22.9% to $ 175.8 million. Export of chem1ical products increased by 14.3% per annum - up to $ 21.5 million.
To note, according to the forecast of the Central Bank of Armenia for 2021, updated in September, the growth of exports and imports will amount to 7.4% and 8.4%, respectively, with an acceleration in 2022 to 8.1% and 9.3%, in 2023 - up to 12% and 10.9%, respectively. The Central Bank, expecting a slight increase in the current account deficit, nevertheless kept the range forecast for 2021 - 1-3% of GDP. In the medium term, according to the Central Bank's estimates, taking into account the trends of recovery in the global and domestic economies and the relatively stable behavior of international prices, the current account deficit will gradually approach the balanced level of 4-6% of GDP.