The Trade Balance records financial flows (payments and receipts) related to transactions (imports and exports) transferring the ownership of goods between residents and non-residents. Also, the Trade Balance records merchanting transactions, the value of the processing of goods, the value of the repair of goods, and the value of goods procured in ports by carriers.
The Trade Balance including all the above transaction categories is compiled by the Bank of Greece based on the statistical information (transactor’s data, value of goods, country of origin and destination, commodity type, and transaction currency) reported by resident monetary financial institutions. Furthermore, for cross-checking purposes, the Bank of Greece obtains directly from the oil refineries data on payments and receipts related respectively to fuel imports and exports. It should be noted that the external trade statistics disseminated by the NSSG are based on customs data, and thus differ from those of the Balance of Payments.
The value of exports is reported in FOB (Free on Board) terms, while that of imports usually in CIF (Cost, Insurance, Freight) terms. The Bank of Greece, based on the data reported by credit institutions or, where such data are not available, by applying a fixed 5% cif/fob conversion coefficient, i.e. FOB = CIF*(1-0.05), reassesses the value of imports in FOB terms, while proportionately allocating this 5% to transport and insurance services.
Trade balance: annual data
Trade balance: quarterly data