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Foreign trade – preliminary results in March and detailed data in the first two months of 2024
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Foreign trade – preliminary results in March and detailed data in the first two months of 2024

Last update: 09.05.2024
Ilustratívny obrázok/Illustrative image
Publisher: Statistical Office of the SR
Topic: Macroeconomic statistics
Domain: Foreign trade
Publish Date: 09.05.2024

In March, foreign trade resulted in a surplus of EUR 577 million, however, it dropped the most year-on-year since May 2020

The normal high numbers in March resulted in a record decrease. Apart from the two significantly weak months of 2020, the year-on-year decrease in the value of imports was the largest in the last decade. It was mainly caused by the decrease in the value of imported motor vehicle parts. The value of exports also dropped significantly and was mainly due to the lower export of motor vehicles.

In March 2024, according to preliminary results, goods in the amount of1) EUR 8.7 billion were exported from Slovakia with a year-on-year decrease by 16.4%. The most significant factor was the decrease in the export of vehicles, but the high year-on-year decrease can also be affected by last March´s high export value.

The value of imports2) decreased by 16.3% to EUR 8.2 billion. The significant decline thus continues for the fifth consecutive month. It was mainly affected by the decrease in the value of imported car parts.

In March 2024, the balance of foreign trade was in surplus in the amount of EUR 577.4 million, which was a lower result by EUR 119.4 million compared to the corresponding period last year.

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Of the ten sections in the export structure, nine of them showed year-on-year declines in the third month of this year. The most traded section of foreign trade Machinery and transport equipment (SITC 7), which also includes the export of motor vehicles, had a significant impact on the development of Slovak exports. This was marked by the highest decline since September 2021. The value of the exported machinery and transport equipment was currently lower by 18.5% year-on-year.

In the structure of imports, all ten sections showed a year-on-year decrease. The decline in total imports was mainly affected by the lower value of imports in the section Machinery and transport equipment (SITC 7), which also includes motor vehicle parts. The value of imported goods in this section was lower by 21.4% year-on-year. Lower imports of the Manufactured products sections (SITC 6) also contributed to a significant decrease in total imports, and the value of goods in this section was lower by 15.5% year-on-year.

The most traded SITC section in Slovakia's foreign trade was Machinery and transport equipment with a share of 61.8% of total exports and 47.4% of total imports.

79.2% of the Slovak exports went to EU member states3) and imports from them represented 67.1%. In March, the exports to the EU member states decreased by 12.9% year-on-year. Imports from the EU member states decreased by 16.7%. Exports to the extra-EU countries decreased by 27.5% year-on-year, and imports from these countries were lower by 15.5%.

Preliminary data for January to March 2024

In the first three months of this year, exports decreased year-on-year by 6.9% to EUR 26.1 billion and imports decreased by 11.2% to EUR 24.3 billion. The balance of foreign trade was in surplus in the amount of EUR 1.8 billion. For the corresponding period last year, it was lower by EUR 1.1 billion.

Adjusted detailed data for January to February 2024

For January and February 2024, according to adjusted data, year-on-year exports decreased by 1.2% to EUR 17.4 billion and imports decreased by 8.4% to EUR 16.1 billion. The balance of foreign trade was in surplus in the amount of EUR 1.2 billion. In the corresponding period last year, the balance of foreign trade ended with a deficit of EUR 59.7 million.

Outputs on the topic of foreign trade

Classifications of foreign trade

Foreign trade statistics are compiled in four different classifications. The Combined Nomenclature (CN) is the primary nomenclature used by all EU member states to report foreign trade in goods when collecting data. It is based on the Harmonized System (HS) of description and numbering of goods and is subject to annual revisions that ensure their timeliness. It is divided into sections (indicated by Roman numerals), chapters (HS2), headings (HS4) and sub-headings (HS6) of the Harmonized System of which a sub-heading of the combined nomenclature (CN8) is created by adding two more digits.

Converters allow to transpose detailed data collected under the CN to other classifications, such as:

  • Standard International Trade Classification (SITC), which correlates with sub-headings of the Harmonized System,
  • Classification according to the Broad Economic Categories (BEC), which categorizes goods into economic categories with regard to their final use,
  • Statistical Classification of Products by Activity (CPA), which allows linking products that have common characteristics with activities defined by NACE.

Preliminary data

They are published monthly no later than 6 weeks after the end of the reference month, according to the First Release Calendar in the SITC classification, Rev. 4. (at the level of 10 basic sections).

Adjusted detailed data

They are published monthly with shifting the deadline by 1 month (about 70 days after the end of the reference month) according to the Harmonized System (in the HS4 structure - approximately 1,200 headings of goods) and according to partner countries.

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  • Statistical Office of the SR
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  • 840 05 Bratislava 45
  • Slovak Republic
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  • e-mail: info@statistics.sk

While publishing of the whole information report or its parts, please state the source of information, the Statistical Office of the Slovak Republic. The Statistical Office of the SR creates high-quality statistics useful for society according to 16 principles regarding the institutional environment, statistical processes and outputs in line with the Code of Practice for European Statistics.


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