In February, net payments for purchases of ships dropped by €65 million and the trade deficit excluding oil and ships shrank by €62 million on the back of a rise in export receipts (of €83 million or 8.4 percent), while the corresponding import bill increased slightly (by €20 million or 1.2 percent).
The services surplus narrowed by €36 million, given that an improvement in the travel balance was offset by lower net receipts from transport services and higher net payments for services. Specifically, travel spending in Greece by non-residents rose by €13 million, while travel spending abroad by residents fell by €8 million; as a result, the travel balance showed a €27 million surplus in February 2013, up by €21 million year-on-year.
The current account balance showed a deficit of €716 million, down by 410 million (or 36.4 percent) year-on-year. This development is mainly due to a decline in the trade deficit.