ECONOMY

Forecast on industrial investments turns positive

Investment spending in the industrial sector is expected to grow this year in the first positive forecast since early 2008, as companies move to upgrade equipment and boost production capacity, according to the Foundation for Economic and Industrial Research (IOBE).

In a survey report completed in March, IOBE said that companies in the sector expect to increase 2011 investment spending by 2.5 percent year-on-year after it fell by 12.2 percent in 2010.

The last time industrial companies in Greece had forecast a positive growth rate for investment spending was in March 2008, according to IOBE.

?The forecast is for a mild rebound which stems from attempts to offset drops in the past two years, supported by projects arising from the new investment law and the implementation of the ESPA program (the EU?s 2007-2013 funding program),? IOBE said.

Upgrading equipment ranks at the top of investment needs along with efforts to boost production capacity, according to 26 percent of respondents followed by steps to improve production methods, the report added.