EBRD expert expects big investments and consolidations to take place in retail in Serbia
Serbia can expect the modernization of retail through acquisitions and new investments in the upcoming period, Miljan Zdrale, the EBRD's regional head of agribusiness for central and south-eastern Europe, stated for Politika's issue of December 12. We expect considerable investments and consolidations. This is predictable, as over 50% of local retail is carried out through an informal traditional sector. The development of modern retail, along with the compliance with market standards implemented in the developed countries of the European Union, can bring benefits to the entire value chain in this sector, from suppliers, the primary production, through logistics and the food industry – Zdrale said.
NBS: Annual inflation in November at 1.9%
According to the data of the Statistical Office, consumer prices declined by 0.3% in November, driven mainly by the seasonal cheapening of unprocessed food, as well as by the fall in petroleum product prices. Working in the opposite direction were higher prices of transport services and the seasonal rise in prices of clothes and footwear. Year-on-year inflation continued to move within the target tolerance band (3±1.5%), amounting to 1.9% at end-November, while core inflation (CPI excluding the prices of food, energy, alcohol and cigarettes) remained almost unchanged from several previous months, measuring 1.0%.
Faster economic growth and oil price movements shape current account deficit dynamics, NBS said
As the bulk of implemented and planned investment is channelled into export-oriented sectors, it is reasonable to expect that export growth will step up in the coming years and that the current account deficit will gradually trend towards 4% of GDP, NBS said in its statement. In addition to the inevitably rising volume of oil and gas imports against the background of strong economic growth, the widening of the current account deficit in 2017 and 2018 was driven also by the rallying global prices of oil. In the period January–October 2018, around 88% of the current account deficit related to the deficit in foreign trade in oil, petroleum products and gas. According to NBS estimates, the effect of the rising global oil prices on the increase in Serbia’s current account deficit in 2017 was around 0.6% of GDP, while in 2018 it is likely to reach 0.7%.
Construction of Chinese industrial park in Belgrade to begin in mid-2019 – Seventy Chinese companies to arrive
The construction of the Chinese industrial park in Belgrade should begin in mid-2019, and the first effects will become apparent in late 2019, it was said at the “Belt and Road Initiative in the Balkans”, held in Belgrade, as reported by Politika. In the first phase alone, the industrial park will bring Serbia USD 2.6 billion in direct investments, a representative of China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC) said. The idea is for the industrial park to attract 70 companies from China, the representative said and added that it would feature companies which produce food, furniture.
Dow rises more than 150 points on trade-deal hopes, but closes well off session highs, Europe closes higher amid US-China trade optimism, British PM faces confidence vote
Stocks closed higher on Wednesday as investors digested news related to the ongoing trade war between the United States and China. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 157.03 points to 24,527.27, led by gains in Caterpillar. The S&P 500 climbed 0.6 percent to close at 2,651.07as the consumer discretionary sector outperformed. The Nasdaq Composite jumped 1 percent to 7,098.31 as Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Google-parent Alphabet rose.
Shares of home-improvement retailer Lowe's rose 2.9 percent after the company announced a $10 billion buyback. Lowe's also reiterated its profit outlook for fiscal 2018.
European stocks closed higher on Wednesday, after President Donald Trump said he was upbeat about the chances of securing a trade deal with China.
The pan-European Stoxx 600 closed provisionally up by 1.69 percent, with all sectors and major bourses in positive territory.
Europe's basic resources stocks — with their heavy exposure to China — were the top performers Wednesday afternoon, up 2.84 percent after Trump said he would not raise tariffs on Chinese products until he was sure about a deal. BHP Group, Boliden and Rio Tinto were all traded higher on the news.
Looking at individual stocks, shares in Germany's biggest lenders Deutsche Bank and Commerzbank have risen 5.81 percent and 5.61 percent respectively after a report that the German government is conducting high-level discussions to smooth the path for a possible merger.