In 2012, the Baltic States had the fastest growth of the gross domestic product (GDP) among the European Union Member States. Estonian economic growth was compared to other countries after Latvia and Lithuania on the third position, being 3.2% bigger than in 2011. In 2012, the GDP at current prices was17.0 billion euros.
In the first three quarters of 2012, construction contributed the most to the GDP growth. The increase of the construction market was driven by repair and reconstruction works of buildings and civil engineering. This growth is mainly caused by reconstruction works done with allowances’ revenue for general government buildings. In the 4th quarter transportation and storage contributed the most successively to the economic growth.
During 2010 and 2011, the increase of the value added of manufacturing was the main contributor to the GDP growth. But in 2012, the decrease in the value added of manufacturing inhibited the GDP growth the most, influenced mainly by the decrease of the manufacturing of computers, electronic and optical products and manufacture of food products.
Economic growth was significantly supported by the domestic demand, which increased by 8%. The increase of the domestic demand was mainly caused by the gross capital formation, which grew 21%, especially due to business sector’s and government sector’s investments in buildings and structures. Inventories of materials of the business sector decreased. Household final consumption expenditures increased by 4%, influenced mainly by the increase in purchase of alcoholic beverages, vehicles and operation of personal transport equipment (e.g. purchase of motor fuel and spare parts).
In 2012, the export of goods and services grew by 6% in real terms. The export of goods increased by 7%, influenced mainly by the fast growth of exports of computers, electronic and optical products in the 4th quarter. The import of goods and services increased by 9%, mainly due to the import of machinery and equipment, electrical equipment and computers, electronic and optical products. The share of net exports in the GDP was 0.5% in 2012.
GDP real growth in Estonia and in the European Union, 2012