Romania’s GDP for the first 2009 trimester is 6.4% lower than the GDP in the first trimester of 2008, and 2.6% lower than the country’s GDP for the last 3 months, according to the data provided by Romania’s National Prognosis Institute (INS), quoted by NewsIn on Friday.

Romania’s GDP for the last trimester is 2.9 percentage points higher than the GDP for the last semester of 2007, amounting to 41.8 billion euros (159.43 billion lei). Romanian Finance Minister declared on Thursday for Reuters that the country’s economy is starting to show signs of recovery.

The Finance Minister estimates a 4% economic contraction and a budgetary deficit of 4.6% of the GDP for 2009. The GDP is estimated to 123.5 billion euros (531.25 billion lei), with one euro buying 4.30 lei. For the first months of 2009, the average exchange rate was 4.2662 lei/euro.

The data used by the Finance Ministry for the budgetary correction considers a 15% contraction in the export of goods and a 25% imports rate contraction for 2009. The current account deficit is expected to drop to 7.5% of the GDP, in contrast to 12.3%, its value in 2008.

"The National Prognosis Institute will publish Flash estimates every trimester, starting with 2009, addressing the current GDP evolution with reference to the situation for the same trimester of the last year, as a means to meet The European Union’s requirements", the INS document shows.