Foreign trade both in goods and services posted a deficit of USD123m in November, according to the preliminary figures reported by the central bank today. Compared to a month earlier, the gap narrowed marginally from USD137m, while compared to a year earlier it narrowed substantially from USD531m. However, the cumulative surplus shrank further to USD133m in January-November 2016 from USD314m a year earlier.
In spite of the Russian oil export cuts, which affected Belarus’s fuel exports, there was zero growth in trade in goods in November after two years of decline. At the same time, merchandise imports plunged 13.3% y/y in November, according to our calculations, after zero growth in October. On the downside, the surplus in services trade declined to only USD218m in November, the lowest since August.