Greece Expects to Shake Off Economy’s Crisis Losses by End of 2022
Greece’s gross domestic product should return to its pre-pandemic level by the end of next year, according to its final budget for 2022.
That outlook for the economy to shake off the slump in the fourth quarter reflects better-than-expected growth of 6.9% seen for this year, a projection that is still lower than that of the European Commission. For 2022, the forecasts envisage expansion of 4.5%.
The country’s improved growth outlook will help reduce a budget deficit and debt burden which remains the highest in Europe, an ongoing scar from its decade-long crisis. The economy suffered a slump of around 25% from that turmoil, and then an extra drop of 9% in 2020 due to the pandemic.
Finance Minister Christos Staikouras submitted his final 2022 budget to Parliament on Friday. Here are additional details:
- Investments are expected to rise 21.9% in 2022, driving the economy’s expansion, while exports are seen increasing 11.1%. Public consumption will fall 2.8% as pandemic-related support measures fade.
- The primary deficit is projected to fall to 1.2% of GDP in 2022, according to enhanced surveillance calculations, from 7.3% this year.
- The debt-to-GDP ratio is seen dropping to 189.6% from a high of 206.3% in 2020. The government also projects new long-term borrowing to be 14 billion euros ($15.8 billion) in 2022.
- The jobless rate is seen at 14.2% in 2022, down from 15.9% this year.
- The government expects prices will rise 0.6% in 2021, and projects a further increase of 0.8% in 2022 due to surging energy costs.
- Privatizations: Receipts from the sale of state assets are seen at 2.2 billion euros next year, up from 625.7 million euros in 2021.
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