EBRD cuts Slovakia 2013 economic growth forecast to 1.7%.

By bne IntelliNews January 22, 2013
The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) revised down its 2013 economic growth forecast for Slovakia to 1.7% in the latest edition of its Regional Economic Prospects, from 2.3% projected in October 2012. The bank reduced also its 2012 growth estimate for the Slovak export-driven economy to 2.2% from 2.7%, saying that the stagnation in the core eurozone had finally caught up with the two erstwhile strongest performers, Slovakia and Poland. It added that the slowdown in Slovakia has become clearly evident and the economys dependence on a small number of export-oriented sectors has thus become a concern. Exports, chiefly those of cars manufactured in the local plants of Volkswagen, PSA Peugeot-Citroen and Kia Motors, were the sole driver of Slovakias GDP growth last year, while domestic demand and household consumption remained subdued. The EBRD noted also that if Slovak GDP growth falls to under 2% in 2013, as it expects, consolidation of the budget to fit within EU's deficit ceiling of 3%, and making a dent in structural unemployment would be more daunting tasks. The EBRD lowered its 2012 growth estimate for the central Europe and the Baltic states region to 1.3% from 1.4% and cut its 2013 outlook to 1.2% from 1.7%.

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