Monaco’s economic rebound of 2021

A Q4 report by the Principality’s statisticians IMSEE shows that Monaco’s revenue, excluding financial and insurance activities, exceeded €16 billion in 2021 for the first time ever, while the average property price per square metre hit a new milestone of €52,000.

The year 2021 will be noted as one of economic recovery in Monaco after a year that was hugely impacted by the Covid crisis. As uncertainty and fear was slowly replaced by a desire to “get on with it” again, the economic situation in the Principality saw a distinct upturn in most areas.

By December 2021, the overall volume of trade, excluding that with France, was up by +23% to €2.9 billion. This remains lower than before the crisis, but the signals are indeed positive.

Imports grew more than exports, with €336 million coming in versus €213 million going out, causing a trade balance deficit of -€634 million. That being said, the volume of the Principality’s exports hit €1.1 billion in 2021, nearing its historical high set in 2019.

For the first time since 2012, imports from outside the European Union were higher than inside. This was driven by the manufacturing of “other industrial products” and “other services” activities. Notably, imports from the UK nearly tripled, making it Monaco’s second largest non-EU importing partner.

Meanwhile, a fifth of all trade is with Italy, Monaco’s leading trade partner.

The goods most traded in 2021 were jewellery and musical instruments, at €409 million, a +61.8% rise, plastic goods, up +37.8% for a total of €233.million, and automotive construction products at €109 million, down an insignificant -0.2%.

Monaco’s revenue, excluding financial and insurance activities, exceeded €16 billion in 2021 for the first time ever. Wholesale trade saw a massive +20.9% growth to +€889.2 million. Over two-thirds of this growth is down to the growth of intermediaries.

The automotive trade, clothing retailers and watch and jewellery sellers are driving retail trade, rebounding +25.4% to +€390.2 million in 2021 over the previous year. It is, however, the return of sports activities, gambling and betting activities that has shown the strongest relative growth in 2021, up by +43.3% to +€224.6 million. Revenue remains lower than in 2019, though at €743 million compared to €938.6 million.

Transport and storage also came back strong and were close to pre-pandemic levels, as were manufacturing, mining, and other industries.

Accommodation and food services were still lower than pre-pandemic times, but were up by +36.4%, showing positive progress. Moderate gains in scientific and technical activities and construction were seen and a good showing for information and communication in 2021 saw that sector exceed 2019 levels with a +17.1% growth.

Only real estate saw a decline of -€335 million, or -32.5%, though transactions increased by +7.1%. With 23 transactions equalling €236 million, the new build market grew more in volume (+43.8%) than in value (+7.8%). The resale market exceeded 400 transactions to over €2 billion. The average price per square metre hit a milestone, going above €50,000 for the first time to nearly €52,000.

By fourth quarter 2021, an inflow of roughly €1.8 billion, combined with positive market impact and currency effects, resulted in an increase in assets under management to rise by +4.5% over the year.

Private sector jobs totalled 56,999 in 2021, over 2,000 more than the previous year. This number is higher than 2019 levels, beating it out by 128 jobs. The number of employees was up in all sectors, except accommodation and food service, with the largest growth in “other services”, which gained 730 jobs.

Nine million more hours were worked in 2021 than in 2020, up 11.2%, with accommodation and food services, scientific and technical activities and admin and support leading the charge.

New business creation was also up, with 825 versus 763 in 2020, but remained lower than in 2019.

Hotel occupancies also bounced back, though not to pre-pandemic levels. On a positive note, the rate increased each month from March 2021, with the autumn being the strongest months.

Finally, at the end of 2021, new vehicle registrations were up +21% and were almost back to pre-crisis levels. Public car park usage was up by +12% but still below 2019 levels.



Photo by Monaco Life