Forecasts for growth keep heading lower

Forecasts for growth keep heading lower

The official forecasts for Greek growth this year keep dropping, the latest being the European Commission’s projection on Thursday that spoke of an expansion of just 1.9 percent.

After the International Monetary Fund and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development slashed their calculations to 2 percent, and the government curtailed its 2.5 percent projection included in the budget to 2.3 percent, in its spring forecasts yesterday Brussels cut its previous estimate of 2.5 percent by 0.6 percentage points. For 2019 the Commission anticipates a growth rate of 2.3 percent, down from the 2.5 percent seen in the fall forecasts.

Economic Affairs Commissioner Pierre Moscovici attributed this reduction to the weaker-than-expected growth in the last quarter of 2017 – just 0.1 percent on a quarterly basis. He added that the Greek economic recovery should continue in a more dynamic fashion after the completion of the bailout program in August.

The Commission also expects the primary surplus target of 3.5 percent of gross domestic product to be attained this year and next, while the jobless rate is seen falling to 20.1 percent in 2018 and 18.4 percent in 2019.

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