Ljubljana, 28 February (STA) - Slovenia has technically slipped out of recession as the country's GDP expanded by 2.1% year-on-year in the final quarter of 2013 after eight quarters of negative growth. The country's economy shrank by 1.1% in real terms in the whole of 2013, figures released by the Statistics Office indicate.
Adjusted for working days and season (the gauge used by the EU statistics office Eurostat), GDP grew by 1.2% from the third quarter of last year and rose by 1.9% compared to the final quarter of 2012.
The latest seasonally- and working days-adjusted data also shows that Slovenia recorded quarter-on-quarter growth in economic activity throughout last year. In the first quarter GDP grew by 0.1% on the quarter before, and then expanded by a further 0.2% in Q2, by 0.4% in Q3 and by 1.2% in Q4.
The economic growth in the final quarter was boosted by investment. Gross fixed capital formation expanded by 5.9% y/y as investment in construction surged by 11.1%, mostly due to the construction of civil engineering structures. Gross fixed capital formation in machinery and equipment rose by 2.9%.
The statisticians also recorded a recovery in private consumption, which was boosted by 3%. Private final consumption remained flat compared to the final quarter of 2012 although consumption of durable products fell again by 4.5%.
Contraction in government spending slowed down to 1.9%. The drop was mainly due to savings in health and social care.
External demand continued to reflect positively on GDP growth, but due to a strong growth in imports the external trade balance had a negative impact on growth (-0.7 percentage points).
Exports rose by 3.7%, a slowdown from a 4% growth the quarter before, while imports increased by 4.9%, mainly on account of import of fuels and lubricants and motor vehicles as well as import of construction and consultancy services.
Value added increased in most activities, especially in construction, where it soared by 7.7%. In manufacturing, value added increased by 2.1% after eight consecutive quarters of decline. In accommodation and food services, value added increased less than in the previous quarter, by 1.4%.