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Electronic trade relatively underdeveloped in Romania


Electronic trade is relatively underdeveloped in Romania, but the latest aggressive expansion of companies specialized in online sales is eroding commercial margins in the market, affecting mainly small traders, according to the study “Trade in Romania – Report after three  decades of changes”, launched by Friedrich Ebert Foundation and Syndex Romania on Friday.

“The development of electronic trade in the past decade placed additional pressure on traders with physical stores, representing at the same time am important opportunity for local capital. The aggressive expansion of players specialized in online sales are eroding commercial market margins, affecting small trade in particular. The need to follow market tendencies forces traders owing small stores to develop their own online sale channels. Electronic trade is, nevertheless, relatively underdeveloped in Romania, with sufficient growth potential,” the study shows.

Another conclusion of the study shows that the development of hypermarket chains and the decline of small trade with local capital seems to have an important negative impact on cash & carry stores, which have been the pioneers of foreign investments in trade in Romania, for years.

At the same time, the growth of the hypermarket segment seems to have reached its limits,  a thing suggested by carrying out very aggressive development strategies and activity diversification attempts towards supermarket and proximity segments. 

“For big commercial chains, future development seems to involve expansion to small towns and even rural areas, as well as intensifying competition in large and medium size towns , both involving supermarket and proximity shop segments,” the report shows.

The increase rate of activity in food retail sector in Romania was much over European average, a trend owed to a favorable economic context, the study shows. Over 2012-2016, VAT grew by 85% in the food retail sector, while the evolution of  employee salary share in VAT dropped from 62.2% in 2012, below European average of 68.7%, to 48.8% in 2016.

Friedrich Ebert Foundation together with Syndex Romania launched on Friday, at a press conference, the study  “Trade in Romania – Report after three decades of changes”.

The study is made by Syndex Romania and offers an evaluation of the  present situation of trade in Romania and the changes it has undergone in the last decades.