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Business news, 17.08.2007 16:20

Steady Growth Figures Among City Hallís Stats

Petersburg The city economy experienced steady growth in the first half of 2007, driven mainly by the processing industry, construction and investment, City Hallís Committee for Economic Development, Industrial Policy and Trade said Tuesday in a statement.

Processing enterprises produced $8.49 billion worth of goods ó a 25 percent increase compared to the first half of 2006. Most products comprised food, drinks and tobacco (38 percent), machinery, equipment and transport vehicles (over 25 percent) and metals (12 percent).

Construction companies completed projects amounting to over one million square meters of residential areas (168 buildings).

The consolidated turnover of city enterprises increased by 35.8 percent up to $51.9 billion. Transport services accounted for $2.8 billion. Stevedore companies in the St. Petersburg Sea Port processed 28.3 million tons of freight. Investment into fixed capital was reported at $2.4 billion, increasing by 14.6 percent compared to the same period last year.

The average salary in the city increased up to 15,153 rubles ($587). Per capita income increased by 7.8 percent and contributed to the growing purchasing power of local residents. Retail turnover increased by 19.3 percent up to $7.9 billion. Services to local residents accounted for $3.4 billion (a seven percent increase).

Inflation was 6.8 percent. Officially registered unemployment is 33,500 people (0.5 percent of the workforce).

City Hallís budget was in profit by $4.42 billion ó a 31.8 percent increase compared to the same period last year. Budget expenses accounted for about $3.47 billion, which is about 37 percent of spending planned for this year.

Most of the funds went towards housing (24.7 percent), education (20.6 percent), healthcare and sport (19.9 percent) and social projects (12.2 percent).

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