The Bulgarian machinery sector generated net sales revenue of BGN 3.279 bln, up 10.9% y/y in 2017.
The sector employed a total of 30,952 people, or 5.9% of the total for the manufacturing industry.
A total of 984 companies represented the manufacture of machinery and equipment sector, compared to 972 a year earlier. Most of them were based in Sofia, Plovdiv and Stara Zagora.
Segment wise, manufacture of power-driven hand tools had the highest growth of 33.18% y/y, followed by manufacture of ovens, furnaces and furnace burners with 32.96%. The biggest decline, of 15.31%, was registered by manufacture of plastics and rubber machinery and by manufacture of machinery for metallurgy with 8.29%.
The leading segments in terms of net sales revenue on the Bulgarian machinery market were manufacturing of other taps and valves, lifting and handling equipment, and fluid power equipment.
The exports reached BGN 11.443 bln, growing by 12.6% compared to the previous year. The most exported machinery products were refrigerators, freezers, engines and motors, valves, machinery parts, as well as automatic data processing machines.
The main competitors of the Bulgarian machinery sector on foreign markets were the world’s major machinery manufacturers such as Germany, Czech Republic, China, Italy and France.
Imports showed an 11.7% y/y growth, reaching BGN 15.999 bln. The leading imported products were automatic data processing machines, valves, harvesting machinery, air conditioning machines and agricultural machines. They accounted for 25.9% of the total machinery imports in the country.
Foreign direct investments (FDI) in the Bulgarian manufacturing of machinery and equipment sector totalled EUR 436.3 mln, an 18.0% annual increase, compared to EUR 330.3 mln in the previous year.