According to information released by Statistics Estonia on Thursday, 64 percent, or the majority, of the value added generated in the Estonian economy in 2016 was created in Harju County. The share of the service sector had increased by more than two percent in most counties, however.
In 2016, Estonia's GDP reached €21 billion at current prices. Harju County's contribution to this total amounted to €13 billion, €11 billion of which came from the capital city of Tallinn.
Harju County was followed by Tartu and Ida-Viru Counties, which contributed ten and six percent, respectively, to the national GDP. Hiiu and Põlva Counties had the smallest shares in 2016, with both counties contributing less than one percent each to the Estonian GDP.
70 percent of Estonia's gross value added was generated in the service sector in 2016. The influence of Tallinn and Tartu, Estonia's largest two cities, in particular resulted in Harju and Tartu Counties having the largest share of services at 78 and 70 percent, respectively. Growth in the share of the service sector was most rapid in Jõgeva, Põlva and Järva Counties. Nonetheless, it cannot be said that the rest of Estonia is catching up with Harju and Tartu Counties, as the majority of development in the service sector is still taking place in Tallinn and Tartu.
Industry and construction accounted for 27 percent of Estonia's gross value added in 2016. As the share of the service sector has increased, the share of industry and construction in the value added has been declining for several years in most counties. This decline has been fastest in Ida-Viru County, where industry and construction had made up 58 percent of the county's total value added in 2014 but accounted for just 50 percent thereof in 2016. The second fastest decline in the share of the sector has taken place in Saare County, where it has fallen from 40 percent in 2014 to 36 percent last year. Over the past two years, however, the share of the industry and construction sector in the value added has shown significant growth in Rapla, Viljandi and Võru Counties.
The agricultural sector accounted for three percent of the gross value added of Estonia in 2016. This sector had the largest share in Jõgeva county at 16 percent. The rise of the service sector has also reduced the share of the agricultural sector in the value added of counties. African swine fever (ASF) and low crop yield have also been of concern in recent years. As a result, the share of the value added of the agricultural sector has declined across all Estonian counties, with the fastest declines recorded in Jõgeva, Põlva and Lääne Counties.
In 2016, GDP per capita was €16,035 euros, up €557 on year. GDP per capita was highst in Harju County at 145 percent of the Estonian average. Harju County was followed by Tartu and Pärnu Counties, where GDP per capita amounted to 94 and 67 percent of the Estonian average, respectively. The lowest GDP per capita was recorded in Põlva County at 41 percent of the Estonian average.
In 2016, the gap in GDP per capita between Harju and Tartu Counties and the rest of the country continued to widen, due primarily to the rapid growth of the cities of Tallinn and Tartu.
Editor: Aili Vahtla