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Georgia’s Foreign Trade in Jan-Sept, 2014

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Georgia’s foreign trade increased 10% year-on-year in the first nine months of 2014 to USD 8.37 billion with the trade gap increasing by 14.5% y/y to USD 4 billion, according to figures released by the state statistics office, Geostat, on October 24.

Exports increased 7% y/y to USD 2.15 billion in January-September 2014, but there was a decline in exports on yearly basis in August and September by 12.8% and 7%, respectively. Import increased 12% y/y to USD 6.2 billion in January-September.

Turkey remains Georgia’s largest trade partner with total turnover of USD 1.4 billion in the first nine months of this year, followed by Azerbaijan – USD 879.1 million; China – USD 613.6 million; Russia – USD 583.1 million; Ukraine – USD 486.7 million; Armenia – USD 396.2 million; Germany – USD 390.8 million; the U.S. – USD 377.2 million; Bulgaria – USD 283.6 million; Japan – USD 269.7 million.

Georgia’s trade with CIS-member countries increased by 0.4% y/y to USD 2.6 billion in January-September 2014. Georgian exports to CIS-member states grew 1% to USD 1.1 billion and imports from CIS-member states increased 0.3% to USD 1.48 billion.

Georgia’s trade turnover with the EU-member states stood at USD 2.18 billion in January-September 2014, up by 8% y/y. Georgian exports to EU-member states reached USD 458 million, a 23% y/y increase and import from the EU increased by 5% y/y to USD 1.7 billion, according to Geostat.

Azerbaijan, Armenia and Russia were Georgia’s largest exporting markets in January-September, 2014. Exports to Azerbaijan stood at USD 425.7 million, down by 19.4% compared to the same period of last year; exports to Armenia increased by 0.7% y/y to USD 224.5 million and exports to Russia more than doubled to USD 212.1 million.

Re-export of cars led the pack in Georgia’s total exports with USD 408.5 million in the first nine months of 2014, which is down by 20.1% compared to the same period of 2013. Decline is mainly attributed to falling re-export of vehicles to Azerbaijan, which was apparently caused by regulations imposed by Azerbaijan starting from April, banning import of vehicles manufactured in EU before 2005, in the U.S. before 2004 and in Japan before 2011.

Export of ferroalloys follows re-export of cars with USD 219.4 million, up by 19.7% y/y, and copper ores and concentrates – USD 201 million, which is more than two-fold increase over the same period of last year.

Value of exported Georgian wine was USD 130.3 million, up by 75.8% y/y, accounting for 6.1% of Georgia’s total exports. 65% of exported Georgian wine went to the Russian market.

Georgia exported mineral waters worth USD 113.7 million in January-September 2014, 56.2% y/y increase, followed by hazelnut – USD 107.2 million (30% y/y increase); nitrogen fertilizers – USD 93.4 million (5.6% y/y decline); medicines – USD 65.7 million (72.3% y/y increase); non-denatured ethyl alcohol and spirits – USD 64.3 million (4% y/y increase); bars and rods of iron and steel – USD 50.3 million (9.4 % y/y increase).

Oil products remain on top of the list of imports with USD 695.7 million, followed by cars with USD 531.7 million; hydrocarbons - USD 238.2 million; medicines - USD 228.3 million; copper ores and concentrates – USD 138.2 million; mobile and other wireless phones – USD 130 million; wheat – USD 102.5 million; cigarettes – USD 73.3 million; computers – USD 71.8 million; metal construction materials – USD 70.1 million.