Spanish growth to outstrip neighbours:Zapatero
11 May 2005, MADRID — Spanish prime minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero used his first state of the nation address to parliament to forecast continued strong growth outpacing the country's EU neighbours in 2005.
11 May 2005
MADRID — Spanish prime minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero used his first state of the nation address to parliament to forecast continued strong growth outpacing the country's EU neighbours in 2005.
"Latest indications concerning economic activity show the Spanish economy is currently growing at a rate of above three percent" based on a new calculation method by the National Statistical Institute figures, Zapatero
Zapatero, who took office in April last year, also forecast a sustainable drop in unemployment to below 10 percent from its current 10.20, a level that is among the highest in the European Union but less than half of what it was in much of the 1980s.
"Next year we will have the possibility of seeing the rate fall below 10 percent for the first time since 1979 and, I hope, in lasting manner," Socialist Zapatero said.
GDP growth, still sluggish among most of Spain's EU partners, advanced in the first quarter of 2005 by an annualised 2.8 percent over an annualised 2.7 percent as measured in the final quarter of last year, according to a Bank of Spain estimate published on 5 May.
A definitive figure is set to be released on 25 May.
In April, the European Commission put Eurozone growth at just 0.5 percent in the first quarter of this year for an annualised two percent.
The Spanish government estimates growth coming in at 2.9 percent this year compared with an OECD forecast of 2.7 percent.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news