On Friday, the Croatian Bureau of Statistics published its first estimate for the GDP in Q1 2022. According to the estimate, the GDP grew by 7% YoY in real terms.
According to the first estimates of the Croatian Bureau of Statistics, GDP grew by 7% YoY in real terms in Q1 2022. It should be noted that this refers to the non-adjusted data. According to the seasonally adjusted data, the GDP increased by 2.7% compared to the previous quarter, 6.7% YoY.
Final consumption, the largest contributor to the GDP, increased by 6.1% in Q1 2022, continuing the economic growth (and recovery) that started in Q2 2021. With the complete easing of COVID-19 measures and the reopening of the economy, as well as the fact that during Q1 2022 the inflationary pressure and the impact of the war in Ukraine was not yet felt. This is also evident if we look at the households (the largest contributor to the final consumption at 74%), which grew by 6.3% YoY. Next up, we have the General government (making up the remaining 26% of the final consumption), which increased by 5.9% YoY. Meanwhile, Gross fixed capital formation increased by 7.9%, and this number is expected to keep growing as more funds from the EU continue to be implemented in the economy.
At the same time, the export of goods and services increased significantly, growing by 29.4% YoY. Out of this, the export of goods grew by 29.4%, while the export of services grew by 24.5%. This is further evidence that the complete easing of measures and border restrictions has had a significant impact on the growth of exports. This is further evidenced if we look at the figures from Q1 2021, during which exports decreased slightly (-1% compared to the same period in 2020), meaning that the restrictions were having the largest impact on the exports (as in Q1 2020 almost no restrictions existed).
On the other hand, import of goods and services also grew significantly, increasing by 25% YoY. Out of this, goods grew by 25.2%, while services grew by 22.8%. Due to the fact that imports (which amounted to HRK 69.8bn were significantly higher than exports (HRK 46.6bn), this means that even with higher exports growth, there were still net negative exports of HRK -23.2bn.
In total, GDP in Q1 2022, in real terms amounted to HRK 106.164bn, representing a 7% increase YoY. As the current geopolitical situation is making the inflationary pressures worse, and the supply chains are still in a precarious situation (but better than in 2021), the GDP growth is expected to continue. However, this growth should happen at a slower pace than especially the levels seen in 2021 (it should be noted that Q2 2021 GDP growth amounted to 16.4%, Q3 amounted to 15.1%, and Q4 amounted to 9.7%) meaning that the base is also higher. As such, and according to most forecasts for 2022, the growth should be between 3-4%.
Croatian GDP, real growth rates (%, YoY)*
*Quarterly Gross Domestic Product, seasonally adjusted real growth rates