Current account deficit misses target

The current account deficit missed the government?s target for 2011 as it came to 9.8 percent of gross domestic product.

The Bank of Greece figures published on Monday showed that the net figure between exports and imports came to 21 billion euros in favor of imports, but this was far more than the target of 8.4 percent of GDP set for last year. The target this year is for a 6.4 percent current account deficit, to decline even further to 5.5 percent next year. Consequently the estimates and targets for 2012 and 2013 will now have to be revised. In 2010 the current account deficit had stood at 22.9 billion euros.

The decrease in receipts from shipping were offset by the increase in those from tourism last year, while demand signaled a drop in imports.

The main reason the target was missed was the increase in the cost of fuel imports, which serves to illustrate how energy-dependent Greece is.

Fuel imports increased by 27.5 percent in 2011, amounting to 17.3 billion euros, from 13.5 billion in 2010.