A decrease in the incoming tourist flow by 65.5%, with a parallel decrease in tourist income by 51.2%, show for January-May 2021 the first data of the Bank of Greece. This event contributed to the worsening of the country’s current account deficit compared to the same period last year.
The deficit in the current account and capital balance increased by 705 million euros.
In particular, the deficit increased by 534 million euros compared to the corresponding period in 2020 and amounted to 6.2 billion euros. However, in May, non-resident travel arrivals and related receipts increased by 413.7% and 286.2%, respectively, as a result of baseline effects due to their low levels in 2020. The increase in the commodity deficit over five months is associated with a large increase in imports compared to exports in absolute terms.
In particular, exports increased by 27.8% and 15.5% at current and fixed prices, while imports increased by 20.1% at current prices and 5.1% at constant prices. It is noted that the export and import of non-fuel products showed the same growth (21.5%) in current prices, while in constant prices they increased by 18.8% and 20.8%, respectively.
The decrease in the surplus of the balance of services is associated, first of all, with the deterioration of the transport balance and the balance of tourism services, while the balance of other services has improved.
The deficit of the general current account and capital balance (which corresponds to the needs of the economy in external financing) increased by 705 million euros compared to the corresponding period in 2020 and amounted to 5.7 billion euros.
The involvement of Paulson & amp; Co. Inc. (ΗΠΑ) in private equity, an increase in the share capital of Πειραιώς Financial Holdings AE and an increase in the share in Reggeborgh Invest BV (Netherlands) in the share capital of ELLAKTOR SA resulted in an increase of 122 million euros in May. In just five months, foreign direct investment increased by 1.7 billion euros.
In portfolio investments, the increase in accounts receivable by residents from abroad is mainly due to an increase of € 2.0 billion in foreign bond investment by residents and an increase of € 952 million in residents’ investment in foreign equities.
The upward trend is associated with an increase of 1.4 billion euros in placements of bonds and interest-bearing bills of the Greek state by non-residents and an increase of 599 million euros in placements by non-residents of shares in Greece.