Statistics Estonia: GDP grows by just 0.6 percent in second quarter

€100 and €200 bills. Photo is illustrative
€100 and €200 bills. Photo is illustrative Source: Siim Lõvi/ERR

In the second quarter (Q2) of 2022, Estonia's gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 0.6 percent on year. The GDP at current prices was €9 billion.

Robert Müürsepp, leading analyst at Statistics Estonia, said that although the GDP at current prices increased by 17.8 percent during Q2, the real GDP remained almost at the same level as during the second quarter last year, due to continued high inflation. "After adjustment for inflation, there was no significant growth in tax revenue or value added," said Müürsepp.

The main driver of the Estonian economy is still information and communication, with these spheres having the biggest positive impact on economic growth during Q2. The other main contributors to GDP growth were professional, scientific and technical activities, and accommodation and food service activities. The latter, which is still recovering from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, made a strong contribution for the second consecutive quarter. Due to rising prices, the majority of economic activities negative impacted GDP growth during the second quarter, with the biggest negative contributions in the areas of manufacturing, real estate activities, the agricultural sector, and wholesale and retail trade.

Private consumption also slowed in the second quarter, increasing by just 4.8 percent. While levels of expenditure on recreational activities abroad have not yet returned to pre-pandemic levels, spending on leisure and entertainment in Estonia exceeded those from before covid.

Q2 saw a large rise in spending on clothing and footwear, restaurants and hotels, and other recreational and cultural pursuits, with a slight decline in education and health expenditure.

Investment spending fell by 23.3 percent, which was a smaller decrease than during previous quarters. The main factor behind the decline was a significant reduction of investments in computer software and databases (-86.5 percent). Despite challenging times in industry, enterprises increased their level of investment in buildings and structures (12.9 percent), as well as in transport equipment (7.5 percent) during Q2, while general government investments fell by 11.0 percent.

Energy-related commodities had the biggest impact on foreign trade during the second quarter. The quarter saw a 0.4 percent decrease in exports and a 5.6 percent increase in imports, with trade in electricity, coke and petroleum products, and crude oil and natural gas having a strong impact. Trade in services was primarily influenced by travel, transport and computer services. Service exports grew by 17.1 percent and imports fell by 13.6 percent. The overall foreign trade balance was in deficit to the tune of almost 200 million euros.

The seasonally adjusted GDP fell by 1.3 percent in comparison to Q1, and showed a 0.3 percent rise against figures for the second quarter of 2021.


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Editor: Michael Cole

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