Boston, MA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 11/08/2012 -- We see little reason to change our pessimistic outlook for the Bulgarian consumer over the remainder of the year. We reiterate our 2012 private consumption growth forecast of 0.4%, with a 1.0% growth expected in 2013. In Q112, private consumption increased by a mere 1.0% year-on-year (y-o-y), dragged down by elevated unemployment and a harder-to-come-by consumer. In fact, retail sales remain in the negative territory, and we see little scope for a pickup in the coming months. In addition, declining house prices, which create a negative wealth effect and extremely low levels of consumer confidence.
Headline Industry Data (local currency)
- 2012 per capita food consumption growth: +1.54%; forecast compound annual growth rate to 2016:+2.34%.
- 2012 alcoholic drinks sales growth: +2.99%; forecast compound annual growth rate to 2016: +4.50%.
- 2012 soft drinks sales growth: +1.43%; forecast compound annual growth rate to 2016: +3.83%.
- 2012 mass grocery retail sales growth: +2.08%; forecast compound annual growth rate to 2016: +4.61%.
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Key Industry Trends
Bulgaria Working on Improving Production Standards: In June 2012, Bulgaria's Minister of Agriculture and Food, Miroslav Naydenov, was cited by local press as stating that the country had met European Commission requirements regarding the welfare of laying hens. The end of June was the deadline for compliance with the regulations. Bulgaria has around 122 poultry farms, with around 2.33mn hens. Authorities Promote Organic Farming: In August 2012, novinite.com reported that the country's State Agriculture Fund had approved projects worth in excess of BGN17.5mn. Some 14 bioproducers (including almond, cherry, plum, artichoke, and linden farmers) will benefit from the funds disbursed as part of the Measure 121 for the Modernization of Agricultural Holdings. The farmers have already invested in new plantations, with plans to growth lavender and hazelnuts also tabled.
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