Germany cuts 2013 growth outlook to 0.4%: ministry source
The German government, in its annual economic report to be published later this week, has slashed its growth forecast for the current year to 0.4 percent, an economy ministry source told AFP on Tuesday.
Until now, Berlin has been pencilling in growth of about 1.0 percent for 2013, but the source said the number "will be closer to 0.4 percent", but that growth would rebound again to 1.6 percent in 2014.
Economy Minister Philipp Roesler is scheduled officially to unveil the forecasts in his annual economic report to be published on Wednesday.
Earlier, the national statistics authority, Destatis, said the German economy, Europe's biggest, grew by a feeble 0.7 percent in 2012, after notching up growth of 4.2 percent and 3.0 percent respectively in 2010 and 2011.
Throughout the crisis, Germany has fared better than its European neighbours thanks in part to deep and painful economic reforms undertaken a number of years ago.
But with many eurozone members in recession, Germany has not been able to remain completely immune, with growth slowing sharply in the latter half of last year.
After expanding by 0.5 percent in the first quarter, 0.3 percent in the second quarter and 0.2 percent in the third quarter, Destatis' top statistician Norbert Raeth said GDP likely contracted by "around a quarter of a percentage point" in the period from October to December.
Destatis is not scheduled to publish more precise fourth-quarter GDP data until next month.
© 2013 AFP