The European Commission forecasts that the Greek Economy will contract by 9.7% in 2020 and will grow by 7.9% in 2021, in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic, according to the Spring Economic Forecast report prepared by the General Directorate of Finance and presented to the Press in Brussels, by Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni.
More specifically, the Commission forecasts an increase in public debt to around 196.4% for 2020 and a decrease to 182.6% for 2021, a deficit of -6.4% for 2020 and -2.1% for 2021, unemployment of 19.9% for 2020 and 16.8% for 2021 and inflation at -0.6% and + 0.5% for the two years.
The Commission warns that Greece’s travel restrictions is a source of negative risks. “Due to the intense concentration of tourism during the summer months, even a brief extension of the restrictions could have a strong downward effect. In addition, the impact of the crisis on the large service sector and the small businesses, which are more vulnerable, could be bigger than expected and suspend the recovery”.
“Today, the Commission reaffirms what we have been pointing out from the outset: that Greece, because of the government’s choices, will unfortunately be Europe’s champion in recession and redundancies”, said opposition leader Alexis Tsipras, commenting on the EU’s ominous predictions.
“The government’s priority has been, is and will be, to protect the public health and human life,” responded the government spokesman Stelios Petsas.
“We have no illusions, we are telling the truth and we are moving forward in a serious manner. We are dealing with the health crisis carefully and by taking the appropriate steps. We support workers, businesses and households affected by the pandemic. We are strengthening the social cohesion and we are adding more and more fuel to restart the economy”, notes Mr. Petsas.