ECONOMY

Cyprus GDP decline narrows in fourth quarter

Cyprus’s GDP contracted by 0.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2014, compared with 0.9 percent in the previous three months, beating a flash estimate made last month, official figures showed on Wednesday.

As a result, the economy suffered its 14th successive quarterly contraction, according to figures from the state statistical service.

Wednesday’s figures compared with a February estimate of a 0.7 percent decline in fourth-quarter growth compared to a third-quarter retreat of 0.3 percent.

Year-on-year, however, real GDP on a seasonally and working-day adjusted basis shrank 2.0 percent in the fourth quarter compared with a flash estimate of 1.9 percent.

In July-September the economy also contracted 2 percent year-on-year, from the previous 1.8 percent estimate.

In November, the European Commission cut its 2015 growth forecast for Cyprus to 0.4 percent, from a previous estimate of 0.9 percent, due to high unemployment and bad debt.

The state statistical service said Wednesday there were positive growth rates in hotels, restaurants, legal and accounting services in the fourth quarter.

But there was a contraction in many other sectors including construction, manufacturing, transport and banking.

[AFP]