FINANCE

Q1 recession to be worse than forecast

q1-recession-to-be-worse-than-forecast

The contraction in the first quarter of 2021 will be worse than projected due to the extended lockdown, according to Finance Ministry estimates, while the fiscal figures will suffer a further setback in March and the next two months.

The better-than-expected picture in the first couple of months of 2021 that Wednesday’s figures showed was mainly thanks to the postponed payment of road tax from December to February, as Alternate Finance Minister Thodoros Skylakakis stated.

Tax revenues in January and February came in at 102 million euros or 1.3% more than the budget’s provisions, with the primary deficit amounting to €1.5 billion against a target for €2.7 billion.

Skylakakis said the March lockdown has already affected this month’s state revenues and is certain to continue affecting the budget in April and May, while the Q1 recession will be higher than anticipated in the budget.